LOVE SONGS FOR THE PLACES WE'VE LOST,Lost Stars is Bob McNeill's first solo album since 2010's Me and Mary Ann. He started writing the songs while on tour in the US and Canada with Gillian Boucher in 2019, inspired by the locations they visited. The album began as a series of love songs, set against these backdrops. When New Zealand went into lockdown in March 2020, he began recording the songs at home, using a makeshift recording studio and whatever instruments and gear happened to be lying around. Working alone, he decided to release the tracks one by one, as they were finished. In early 2022, Bob revisted Lost Stars. He re-recorded two of the songs and remastered the album, adding the single "Itasca".
FROM LOCKDOWN IN NEW ZEALAND
Lost Stars tells unusual stories in unfamiliar landscapes: a relationship that can't survive crossing the state line between Oregon and California; a man who leaves the love of his life in central France; an islander slowly captured by big city life in Massachusetts. Russian sailors crossing the Pacific, to wind up in San Francisco among the Spanish missions. Lives lived in a failed boom town in the Mojave desert. Lost Stars also visits an eclectic group of great and quixotic figures - Amelia Earhart, running out of fuel over the Pacific; Robert Louis Stevenson, plodding through French mountains among the ghosts of the Camisards; Donald Crowhurst, alone in the South Atlantic; and, in the title track, Carl Sagan.
Featuring McNeill's unique songwriting and direct, primary melodies, the album is driven by his guitar playing, on acoustic, Spanish and electric guitars. Freed from the usual constraints of a production environment, and with McNeill playing all the instruments, the album is his most intimate to date, embracing all his eclectic influences, from folk to rock, alt-country and Spanish music.
CREDITSRecorded by Bob McNeill
Using whatever was to hand
Mixed and mastered by Bob McNeill, April 2022
Special guest vocal by Emily Griffiths on "Itasca"
Radio voice by Ted Cizaldo on "Itasca"
Released 1 May 2022
All songs written by Bob McNeill