Shurman: The Artists I Love Transcend Labels

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I heard you are working on a new album?

Yeah, we've been putting together new material. We're doing about twenty-two shows this month and as soon as we get done we'll be back in the studio recording new material. We're hoping to have it finished before we head over to Europe in the fall.

What direction is the new album heading in?

It's hard to say. The band has always been very hard to pigeonhole, as far as our sound; we've always been country and soul and rock and roll and folk along with acoustic instruments and electric instruments.

We've always prided ourselves with being a band that's very hard to put a moniker on. With this new record, for the first time, we've written more of the songs around a melody instead of sitting down with a bunch of words on a piece of paper and putting music to it.

We've been doing a lot of co-writing, and Mike and I share lead vocals. I'd say the writing is a bit more thoughtful. Songwriting is not something where one day you say, "I get this, I can do this now." It's always a work in progress. I've dedicated more time to writing on this record than any past album and really tried to hone the craft.

Are you playing any of the new stuff live?

Oh yeah, and they seem to fit in seamlessly with the old songs. Seeing people who know the old stuff and when they hear the new songs are singing along with it by the end is the ultimate test to me.

I want to know the story of Shurman.

The band came together in Los Angeles. We got to play the places we'd always wanted to and then it came to a point where we had to go out and really work. We got in the van and toured across the country.

Then we eventually moved to Austin. Everybody that is in the band now is someone who [was friends with Shurman] before. In fact, the bass player I have now I met years ago and told my bass player then that if anything ever happened to him I was going to replace him with that guy. [laughs]

[So] when we moved to Austin my bass player at the time couldn't make the move. After the band was in Texas, I [tracked down current bassist Mike Therieau] and he actually lived a mile from my house. It was like destiny. The four of us together now is kind of like my dream band. It's been the most rewarding and exciting thing I've been through in the last 10 years. If you don't have people to share it with like them it doesn't mean anything.

We opened up for the Refreshments when they were called All You Can Eat, before they changed their name.

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When Caleb isn't writing about music for New Times, he turns to cheesy horror movies and Jim Beam to pass the time.
Contact: Caleb Haley