BRAIN DEGRAW REFLECTS ON “SSAB SONGS” RECORDING PROCESS

Back in the mid to late ’90s Harmony Korine and Brian DeGraw colllaborated on a one track album entitled “SSAB Songs”. While they were not the only musicians to play on the album (which was commercially released in 1998) they were the driving forces behind the idea. Back in November of 2011, DeGraw spoke to Hillbilly Magazine and reflected on the time spent recording “SSAB Songs”.

Hillbilly : You collaborated some years ago with Harmony Korine on SSAB Songs. Whats your thoughts on the collaborative process?
Brian DeGraw : Those collaborations were done in an interesting time shortly after i moved to NYC from DC. Harmony was someone who i connected with instantly. We met when a mutual friend asked me to go to this recording studio where Harm wanted to make an album of some sort. So he had asked this guy to round up a bunch of musicians to show up there and just work out some sort of jam. It was hilarious. I showed up there…in this dirty basement studio on Allen street that smelled like rotting fish and there were like ten or twelve people in there with Harm and everyone was trying to figure out how to go about this and nothing was really getting done at all and for some reason Harm and I just looked at each other and sort gave each other this nod of affirmation and we sort of just left the place and went off on our own to his place and just jammed for hours and recorded on four track cassette. After that we continued to do that for a few years. We made so many weird recordings….most of which are lost I think. We would go up to his apartment in Gramercy park with broken keyboards and banjos with no strings and bicycle wheels and whatever we could find that made a sound…..and we would just go crazy all night. We did a lot of stuff over the answering machine too….like we would call Bjork and have her sing through the fax while we jammed in the apartment. It was truly cacophonous and beautiful.

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