Episode 134: Kip Boardman
Air date: 5.6.2015
The story behind Los Angeles artist Kip Boardman’s newest album started with the band he’d assembled for a gig at Los Angeles’ legendary West Side hole-in-the-wall dive bar and music venue, The Cinema Bar. As is often the case, the night of the gig a group of stellar musicians wound up playing yet another exceptional show for fifteen people; such is the life of a musician. But one of those lucky people in the audience that night in 2013 was longtime Brian Wilson percussionist Nelson Bragg, who also happened to own a small record label. The band was hot, the songs were good and Bragg was impressed enough to approach Boardman after the show and ask him if he thought he could replicate that magic and energy in a recording studio. Boardman smartly said that he could and the pair decided to make an album together. In a stroke of logical inspiration, Boardman and Bragg took the exact same players from the Cinema Bar show into the studio and track the songs completely live in order to capture as much of the live show lightning as possible into the studio bottle. The result is Boardman, ten songs that swing, smolder, groove and stay out of their own way. Boardman’s reedy tenor doesn’t so much soar over this group of tasteful, seasoned musicians as it lilts across the surface - ducking, meandering and inviting the listener to come along for the ride. Imagine Neil Young fronting The Grateful Dead if Jerry and company were playing in tune and in time. Boardman’s economical dry wit and clever smirk are in full display on the album that bears his name, and when the needle reaches the center groove at the end of side two, it just feels right to flip it over and start again.