Tracks off for mastering!

Tracks sent off for final mastering touch up for vinyl this morning. Here’s the song listing for-

MOUNTAIN

1-The Great Unknown
2-Stickemup
3-Under His Command
4-Friend of Mine
5-Gone (Not Dead)
6-Wade in the Darkness
7-Child of God
8-Sleeping With Lions
9-The River
10-Cold Black Water
11-The Plan
12-If Your Way Gets Dark
13-Two Keys and a Good Book
14-Killing Machine
15-Mountain

TCS - Mountain

Kickstarter for album “Mountain” to help self fund “Ways”

Please check out our Kickstarter for “Mountain”, share and tag your friends. And thank you very much for playing a role in Cold Stares history- TCS

A tale of two records, publishing rights, and the struggles of a roots rock band in 2018.

As we began to discuss our next record which would have been titled “Ways” we decided together to pass on the record label offers we had and try to self fund the album in an attempt keep our music publishing this time. For those of you that don’t know when you see our music on a Monster Energy commercial, ESPN or a show on TNT, the money made from those performances actually go back to the record company instead of the artist.

Every record deal offer out there for us at the moment had the record label holding our publishing. Our last record deal the record label held our publishing. At this point in our career we were no longer willing to give that up, and artists shouldn’t have to. It’s hard enough to be a rock band out there right now, and for us to sustain our career we have to hold our licensing. So we decided to try to fund our record with our fans.

Here’s the dilemma. To properly record, produce, and promote “WAYS” we needed to raise around 20k. We have been really struggling on asking our fans to contribute that kind of money. We are a working class band, and we know a lot of our fans are blue collar working folks and to be honest it just felt a bit heavy to us. We built a kickstarter and then mulled for weeks over a discussion on what to do. We lost a lot of sleep, but through a lot of prayer and meditation we came to an answer.

What we decided. We decided we wanted to try to pay for the “WAYS” album ourselves. But how could we do that? Release “MOUNTAIN”.

Backstory- In the beginning of 2016 I was a bit over 2 years out cancer free. At that point I wasn’t for sure what life held ahead, but I knew my goal was to just live and make it to the goal we set with my doctors, five years. I also knew a lot of my friends that had gone through treatment with me had lost their battles. Not knowing exactly what we might have to deal with in the near future, we wanted to write and record everything I could so that if something happened to me I would leave a musical legacy behind for The Cold Stares. So we went in the studio with Greg Pearce and recorded “Dark Dark Blue”, and then “The Southern”. Both of these EP’s were released in 2016 with ZERO PR budget, zero buzz behind them. We also released some singles “Stickemup”, “Sleeping with Lions” and our version of the Allman’s classic “Whipping Post”. What we thought at the time, was that later when we got more well known our new fans would find these older EP’s. What we didn’t understand and what we have learned over the years is that without some PR budget behind ANY release- no one will hear or find it. No one is exactly pushing rock music onto the front page of Spotify or iTunes these days to be seen if you haven’t noticed. Those EP’s were very difficult to find online and most of these songs have never been heard outside of our close immediate fan base. So what we decided to do was take that group of songs, along with a few others our fans had never heard, remix and master them together and release as one album “Mountain”.

This group of 15 songs, all written around the same time, share a common theme and feel and we have always felt that they are just too important not to be presented correctly. Releasing “Mountain” will do a couple things, it will give these songs an opportunity to be heard, give our old fans a few new songs and remasters, and it will also give us an avenue to raise money for our February release “Ways”. We felt much better about raising the money with our fans in this fashion and we think it’s the proper way to move forward.

With your help we can meet or exceed our goal of 5k that will allow us to release “Mountain” and have a reasonable PR budget to get “Mountain” heard. Sales from “Mountain” and any additional money that might be possibly raised from this campaign will go to the funding of “Ways”. Any money we might be short of for “Ways” we will be funding ourselves. We honestly feel that “Mountain” will be our best album release to date, and when we look at the song listing I can’t say any other release comes close to summing up who we are musically. “Mountain” symbolically means so many different things to us, but more than anything what we’ve overcome, on our terms to be here with you. Thank you for your support in getting us here, and beyond. God Bless-

THE COLD STARES

“Break my Fall” hits 1 million streams on spotify!

FREE GIVEAWAY!
So this happened this weekend. Our track “Break My Fall” slipped over a million streams on Spotify alone. I get messages from around the world weekly about this song and cannot tell you how much it means to me in this day and age, that a song like this connects with so many of you. We wanted to do a giveaway as part of a thank you. We will draw a name from anyone sharing this post tomorrow morning at 9am and that person will receive an autographed Cold Stares CD or Poster, your choice in the mail this week. Many of you have asked about a tuning/tab break down of #breakmyfall so I’ll also put together a video for you guys as well this week. Please continue to add #breakmyfall to your Spotify playlists and thank you all so much-

Announcement – The Cold Stares – “Sleeping with Lions” licensed for spot on ESPN

Announcement- We learned over the weekend that The Cold Stares song “Sleeping with Lions” has been licensed for a spot on ESPN that will begin to air in August. Please share with your friends and add #sleepingwithlions to your Spotify playlists
Waited all weekend to announce, and just didn’t want to detract any focus from honoring our soldiers. We are very excited to continue to land these spots-

Sleeping with Lions

NEED YOUR SUGGESTIONS! GOOD NEWS ANNOUNCEMENT!

NEED YOUR SUGGESTIONS- AND GOOD NEWS ANNOUNCEMENT-
Ok folks. A bit of a heads up on the WAYS album project and our Kickstarter fund raiser. When we posted about the project a couple of weeks ago we got an outpouring of support and interest in the project. Lucky enough for us, one person that we caught the interest of was our friend Mark Needham (Fleetwood Mac, Imagine Dragons, The Killers). Can’t tell you what how much Mark has done to try to help get us where we are. We spoke to Mark after the announcement and to our surprise he has offered to engineer and help us produce the album. He knows how important this record is, and is determined to help us make “THE” record we need to make. Mark obviously brings a ton of validity into the project. This part of the project is moving from Memphis to Marks Studio in Nashville. The acoustic work will be done in Sante Fe, New Mexico as planned. We are shooting to launch the Kickstarter May 15th, our goal is 20k. This will allow us to record the album, master it, produce the physical cd/vinyl, and our first actual budget to promote the album. Everything we’ve done so far in our career has been 100% word of mouth, part of the project will allocate some money towards PR so that people can actually hear about our new album. Amazing right? This still leaves part of the budget to be covered by the band, but this will give us enough steam to compete with the labels and actually get a rock and roll album in front of some people again.
Questions for our fans. Here’s a list of SOME of the items we are including in the kickstarter campaign that will last 30 days. IS there something else you guys would like to see offered that would help raise the money?

1-Obviously signed cds, vinyl, t-shirts, posters.
2-House concerts anywhere in the continental US. YES we are actually doing this as part of it, and yes if you meet the contribution we’ll bring the rock and roll.
3-Naming a song on the album. (We are reserving one song, and yes- one lucky fan contributor will name it.)
4-Naming our record label. (ONE fan contributor will actually be the one to name our label that our first release will be on, and hopefully some other great albums to come.)
5-Framed WAYS vinyl album presentation boxes for wall art.
6-WAYS coffee table book with images from the making of the album
7-Liner note mentions of some of our contributors

What else? Before we launch this, which is really for the fans, by the fans, we’d love to hear your feedback. Nothing is off the table if you guys are willing to contribute to helping us do this without outside help. Love to hear your suggestions- Reach us by email – info@thecoldstares.com or on Facebook – The Cold Stares

“Head Bent ” Release Date!

And…. we finally have a release date. More behind the scenes (as usual), but “Head Bent” will be released world wide June 6 2017. Digital, CD and Vinyl. Single and video coming just weeks prior TBA.

Head Bent - TCS

Maybe another TV spot?

Tonight we are in the studio with our mainstay engineer Greg Pearce recording a very special cover song for maybe another TV spot.

What’s one song you’ve heard us play live and wish was available but has not been recorded….yet?……

Get it right and you’ll be in the running for a free Cold Stares hat drawn in the morning…… Visit us on Facebook!

Early 2017 – New album and tours!

Early 2017 The Cold Stares will release our Small Stone Records album “HEAD BENT”. The track listing has been finalized, and the album art work will be posted in the next week. Very proud of the record, our relationship with SS, and excited about all the things happening in 2017 for the band. The album will be available on vinyl as well as digital and CD. A national tour as well as a European tour is in the works. You will also find us at SXSW 2017.

HEAD BENT

1-John
2-Head Bent
3-Kings
4-Neighbor Blues
5-Stuck in a Rut
6-Ball and Twine
7-God and Country
9-Price to Pay
10-Caught in the Weather
11-One Way Outta Here

The Southern EP – Background and Lyrics for Cold Black Water

Leading up to the release of our new EP “The Southern” next week I’m going to post the lyrics to each song on the album with an explanation and a little background how each song originated. You guys always ask at shows where some of the songs come from, so hopefully this is something you’ll enjoy. The first song is “Cold Black Water” the third track on “The Southern”. CT

COLD BLACK WATER
I wrote this song specifically about Jeff Buckley. During the time that my music persona really formed, Buckley was a huge influence on me. Everyone now debates on Jeff’s greatness, but to me it’s not as simple as one or two songs, or his voice, or his arrangements. Jeff Buckley’s greatness was the intangible thing that makes all artists great. It’s the thing that can’t be explained, but can be felt when you hear or see their work, or soak up when you are around them. Tim Buckley, Jeff’s father died around the same age as Jeff which is very ironic. And then the way Jeff died, in the Mississippi river, clothes on, in a moment of freedom when he decided to wade in to the water that night, that longing to push it, risk it, live it, like I’ve waded into trouble so many times in my life but somehow by the grace of God emerged. Of course Jeff didn’t. And we’ll never know what he might have become. But for those of us that were impacted by his work, he is a Robert Johnson, Jim Morrison type figure. Enigmatic. Mysterious. But in the end human. As soon as I picked through the opening riff to this song in my living room, I saw that water surrounding Jeff, the darkness of the current, the moon above him, as the world around him was touting him as the savior of rock music, what the moment felt like to fade into that murky water. Wrote the song in one long poem in the moments following.

Here are the lyrics, as well as some explanations in parenthesis.

Cold Black Water

Don’t you call my name Peter don’t you dare (Matthew 16:9 )
I been treading in the water and a fever running through my head
They say I was the chosen one who’d make it all alright (Jeff’s critical acclaim)
But I’m sinking in the Cold Black Water down here tonight. (drowning)

I was just trying to find a place I could rest my shoes
Quarter mile off of Beale I could still hear them sing them blues (Beale street where Jeff was found in the Mississippi river)
Bottle of wine singing hallelujah right across my lips (Jeff’s version of “Hallelujah” is still daily discussed, and his love for wine was known)
Current of the ole Mississippi dancing at my hips

Swing low, low brother won’t you drag that line (metaphor for them dragging the river for Jeff’s body)
Swing low low never know just what you’ll find
Every child of God gotta answer when it comes his time (we are all going to die, quicker you wrap your head around that, the better you’ll start to live)

Don’t you shed no tears for me on that muddy ground
Don’t you waste no wine for me when they lay me down
Don’t you stray down in that water just to see my face
Come up baptized trying just to find some grace (Grace was Jeff’s critically acclaimed masterpiece album)

Swing low, low brother won’t you drag that line
Swing low low never know just what you’ll find
Every child of God gotta answer when it comes his time

Buckley_found

Buckley_missing