18 August 2010

Dear New Orleans – UPDATED

As you may recall, in the past few years R.E.M.’s Mike Mills has gotten involved with several charities which aid New Orleans, the city that was devastated five years ago by Hurricane Katrina and more recently by the Gulf oil spill. So it comes as no surprise that Mike has donated tracks for a new benefit album, compiled by Air Traffic Control in collaboration with Future of Music Coalition, and entitled Dear New Orleans. Proceeds from the sale of this album will be granted to Sweet Home New Orleans, Gulf Restoration Network, the New Orleans based non-profit organisations working to support and sustain the region’s unique musical and cultural traditions, and to protect and restore vital environmental and community resources for future generations.

The list of artists who have contributed tracks to this album includes Indigo Girls, the Wrens, OK Go, Jill Sobule and many others, and Mike Mills will be on two tracks; if my memory serves me right, these were recorded live on 5 October 2009 when Mike performed with the cult New Orleans band Bonerama at the Rock and Roll Hotel in Washington DC:

Track 29: Mike Mills and Bonerama: “Ohio” [ft. Wayne Kramer and Dave Herlihy]
Track 30: Wayne Kramer and Bonerama: “Kick Out the Jams” [ft. Mike Mills, Erin McKeown, Nicole Atkins, and Martin Perna]

The album Dear New Orleans will be released on 24 August 2010 to mark the fifth anniversary of the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina.

In other news, Lori Baily of the Brooklyn Vegan fame has posted her own report and photos from the Baseball Project gig at Maxwell’s. Without further ado, view her beautiful photos here.

Also, Scott McCaughey himself has posted his own recap of the recent Baseball Project shows, with photos too – find them all at REMHQ.

UPDATE: Here’s another review of the Baseball Project’s Solid Sound show, paired with a gorgeous photo of our hero Mike Mills. happy

Even better, the director Chris McCoy and the rest of the Antenna team have hit their fundraising goal, which means that the documentary about this legendary Memphis club will be completed, and we will get to see and hear Mr Mills tell the tales of R.E.M.’s early trips to Tennessee! Woo-hoo! Many thanks to everyone who has supported the project (myself included lol) and I will keep you updated re: festival screening dates etc.


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2 Responses to “Dear New Orleans – UPDATED”

  1. Ophelia Says:

    Do you know if “Ohio” is a cover of the Over the Rhine song (or some other song I’m not aware of)? I wasn’t sure if these were original songs or covers.

  2. Ivana Says:

    Yeah, it’s a cover of Neil Young’s song. Mike also sang “Ohio” with Tom Morello’s band at this year’s SXSW festival. happy

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