How The Organ Grinder’s Monkey is Shaping Up

monkey-with-cymbals-print-c10121313 So, we’re about a week in The Organ Grinder’s Monkey project, and where do we stand?

As a reminder, this is a crowd-funded, crowd-chosen album by Meursault, released pretty much NOW through Kickstarter, to help fund the band’s trip to SXSW 2014 and subsequent US tour. In short, if you chip in you get a copy of the album, and/or a ticket to one of the launch nights, as well as the chance to choose five songs (Meursault songs or cover versions, whatever you prefer) which we will record this weekend and next, and then put on the album you’ve bought.

In fact if you chip in a bit more, you can still guarantee your choice of cover song ends up on the album, and you can still get the one remaining bumper package of a private gig, copy of the album, hand-printed poster and everything else.

After a week we have done really well, and owe everyone who has chipped in a massive thank you.  With votes coming in the album is starting to take shape, and the band are already frantically practising the obvious leaders at this stage. The suggestions for covers have been really interesting as well – in fact, so interesting that I am going to do a podcast comprised of only songs from the list of suggestions – and I have no idea how we are going to trim it down to a sensible number.

So for those of you still to vote, here are some of the leading songs at the moment, but you can definitely still make a difference if you choose something interesting which jumps out at us:

Current favourite Meursault tunes:
Dearly Distracted
One Day This’ll All be Fields
Crank Resolutions

Current leading covers:
Dinosaur Act by Low
Fare Thee Well by the Willard Grant Conspiracy
Poor Old Christopher Robin by PAWS
I’ll Believe in Anything by Wolf Parade
Tugboat by Galaxie 500
Why Would I Want to Die? by Grandaddy

To be decided:
We’ve also had a good few bands with multiple songs requested, but with no one song being a clear leader. We’ll be trying to incorporate something by most of these bands, but it depends on what people vote for in the meantime and what songs are the band’s own favourites.
Ivor Cutler
Yusuf Azak
Adam Stafford
Nick Cave
The Magnetic Fields
Dave Van Ronk
King Creosote & Jon Hopkins

This is not to say that all the songs above are definitely on the album, we’re still in the middle of the voting process, it’s just some food for thought if you have yet to vote, or yet to contribute altogether.

We are going to try to steer clear of doing too many local covers, or songs by bands who are our pals. There have been a lot of suggestions for songs by Withered Hand, The Twilight Sad, Frightened Rabbit, eagleowl, Rick Redbeard… loads of bands who we would consider friends, and who are sort of part of the same kind of loose Scottish music scene that we are part of. We don’t want this album to become just a cliquey chum-in though, so we’re trying to keep the scope as wide as we can.

Also, some of these songs are really personal to people we know very well, and it would feel a bit intrusive and inappropriate to trample all over the songs they wrote for their own personal reasons. This is fine when you don’t know the writer, but when you’re friends with them it feels a bit different somehow.

So there you have it. The Organ Grinder’s Monkey is shaping up nicely, if you ask me. You have another ten days to contribute, so get stuck in, and I’ll keep you updated about how the tracklisting is shaping up as we go.

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