Welcome to a special edition of our weekly Nativology blog.
Normally, we put up a song from our archives on Wednesdays, and, if you go to our Bandcamp page and see the albums-worth of gems from the Native Vault, you’ll see we did a lot of recording during our active years. Mainly, we endeavored to develop material for the band, but occasionally one of us took the step of working on tunes for strictly personal reasons.
Today’s tune is one Mike Jaimes started on in 1991, before Native was formed. Recorded in Dave Thomas’ room at The Clinton Arms Hotel (aka, The Hippie Hotel) on a Tascam 4-track cassette recorder, Mike was keen to make a demo of a song he’d written the music to, and which had beautiful, poignant lyrics by his good friend, Joe Rakha (5/2/1964 – 9/19/2002).
Years later, in 1998, Mike returned to the song. Dave did a really lousy mixdown from the 4-track to the 8-track Tascam that was used in all the recordings you hear in our weekly post. Mike then laid down a single vocal take, and there it remained in an unmixed state until today.
Dave has taken the instrument tracks from the earlier tape and combined them with the 1998 vocal to create a new mix.
We think it exemplifies a lot about Mike — his way with a melody, and his heartfelt delivery would be hard to match, even by the artists he admired the most.
We’ve long wrestled with the question of what to do with this singularity in our archive, and realized that today is the most fitting moment to share it.
We miss Mike more than could ever be expressed, but when October 13 rolls around it’s especially tough, and each of us finds that it’s been —