Charlotte Cornfield Announces Could Have Done Anything
Charlotte Cornfield has announces her new full-length Could Have Done Anything, will come out out on May 12th via Polyvinyl/Double Double Whammy. Along with the news the Canadian singer/songwriter has shared lead single/video, “You and Me.”
Cornfield’s preceding albums were made in familiar settings, with troupes of friends, this time she reached into the unknown, contacting producer Josh Kaufman (Bonny Light Horseman). She jumped into an old Subaru, driving seven hours south to the Hudson Valley. The car didn’t have any A/C; she had only recently earned her license; and she had never met the producer she was driving down to meet. Cornfield and Kaufman would convene in Upstate New York, first at the stained-glass-tinted Dreamland Recording Studios, then at the nearby Isokon Studio, run by engineer D. James Goodwin (Kevin Morby, Whitney) and assistant engineer Gillian Pelkonen. Four people, one album, six days; Kaufman and Cornfield (who went to school for jazz drums) played every instrument themselves, from ringing guitars to cozy piano, Hammond B3, pedal steel and synthesizers. The resulting sound is at once elaborate and unrehearsed; there’s a sense that it’s coming together—and coming alive—at the very moment it’s being made.
Intimacy and absence go hand-in-hand on Could Have Done Anything: the theme repeats on the unfussy love-song “You and Me,” with its tale of tour and homecoming. “You’re sunkissed in your Subaru / Picking me up at Terminal 3,” she sings—and, later, “two bikes on a pavement path / ice cream cones and epitaphs.” Some love is as simple as this: liberating, easy, like piano and guitar in two-step. “I’ve been trying to write a song like this for a long time,” Cornfield said. “A catchy love-song, with cars. Where it feels like the narrator could go anywhere and do anything.” The accompanying video was beautifully animated by Ben Sloan.
That was the spirit of this record: connection, possibility, acceptance. “Don’t be afraid to take a left,” Kaufman would say. Even with the small things: layering programmed drums over real ones; wandering around the tracking room with a pair of claves in your hands, adding random, surround-sound echoes, or turning a ballad about broken friendships into a song about seeing Stephin Merritt in 2010. Throughout, Cornfield tried to channel the energy of her favorite classic records, from Tapestry to Blood On The Tracks to Car Wheels On A Gravel Road—albums where the listener is simply carried by the songs and the playing.
Could Have Done Anything
1. Gentle Like the Drugs
2. You and Me
3. In From the Rain
4. The Magnetic Fields
5. Cut and Dry
7. I Dream Of
8. Could Have Done Anything
9. Walking with Rachael
Charlotte Cornfield 2023 Tour Dates
Thu. July 6 – Sun. July 9 – Winnipeg, MB @ Winnipeg Folk Festival
Thu. Aug. 31 – Sept. 3 – Dorset, UK @ End of the Road Festival
Pre-order Could Have Done Anything by Charlotte Cornfield HERE
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