November 10th 2018 was the official release date of Casey’s new album “November”. Since this day, “November” is available worldwide. The same day Casey played in the majestic Castle Rapperswil overlooking the shores of Lake Zurich. Click here if you missed the blog about Castle Rapperswil!
The new album features a collection of songs mostly inspired by landscapes and childhood/young adult memories of Casey growing up in the Blue Ridge Mountain region of Northern Virginia and a small farming community in Upstate New York. Behind every song is a memory and behind every memory is an emotion. Some memories are good memories, others are emotionally difficult. But this is life and these songs are Casey’s life. He hopes they bring the listeners something they can connect with – be it a journey of joy or melancholy.
The album is titled “November” because the month of November has a special meaning in Casey’s life: November is not only the month in which Casey was born but many significant events of Casey’s life took place in November. Most songs are connected with special memories of that particular time of the year, e.g. “Indian Summer” or “Thanksgiving”.
However, the first song on the album – “Marlogue Wood” – has a special connection with the album cover picture and especially with the picture on the back cover of the CD and the picture on the CD itself. Casey lived for a while in Ireland and visited Marlogue Woods himself a couple of times. He was fascinated with the mystical beauty of this wood. When looking for a cover picture, he came across this very picture online and made his manager search for the photographer. After a couple of hours of research, Casey’s manager found the picture and the Irish photographer Bernie Carney on Facebook.
On Bernie’s Facebook page was a moving and beautifully written tribute to her dog Ruby, who had died recently, with a picture of Ruby on the same trail as the cover picture. As an animal lover and cat owner, Casey was touched by Bernie’s words about the loss of her beloved dog. Ruby now graces the back cover of the album and the CD. Casey donates part of the proceeds of “November” to animal charity. He named his animal charity “The Ruby Fund” after Ruby.
The second song on the album is titled “Listen To The Sweet Song Of The River”. This song represents Casey’s desire to be able to, not only hear, but “listen” to the important things in life. Not just to look but also to see.
The third song “November” reflects the particularities and moods of a month that embraces you in warmth and leaves you in the cold.
The following three songs – “Indian Summer”, “The Time Of Silence” and “Thanksgiving” – are also strongly connected with the month November: “Indian Summer” is a period of an unusually warm and dry weather situation in November in Northern America. “The Time Of Silence” is about extreme loss and learning how to bear the sadness of tragedy. “Thanksgiving” refers to the national holiday celebrating the blessings of the harvest and of the preceding year. All three songs capture Casey’s personal feelings and experiences during this time of the year.
“The Whisper That Shatters The Silence” is a powerful song about the calm before the storm or the pastoral solitude when it is over, a simple gesture of goodwill that can end or dramatically improve tension, sometimes years long tension in a relationship.
The song “Hymn” is inspired by the prayer meetings on Wednesday night in Casey’s father’s and uncle’s churches when the believers would meet to pray and sing together. In contrast to the Sunday services, which were often an intense experience, Wednesday’s were when people lifted each other up in prayer and song.
As a young child growing up in the Blue Ridge Mountain region of Northern Virginia, it was a common event between Casey and his older brother to try to capture fireflies in glass jars as the sun set. Being only 4 or 5 years old, you can imagine how magical it must have been for a young boy to see his brother catch these flying creatures in a jar and stare in wonder at how they lit up the night. Sometimes his brother let Casey carry the jar through the forrest before letting them go free. Sometimes Casey got lucky and caught his own and his brother then would exaggerate his level of skill and stealth and hunting technique to their parents on arriving home. It’s the first time Casey remembers feeling a sense of accomplishment. The magical wonder of creation and nature and the eternal bond between brothers – both so easily taken for granted and yet both so easily lost. Surely on Smith Mountain road, Lynchburg, Virginia, even now, those fireflies are putting on their show for free to an enraptured child. The song “Chasing Fireflies” is about this memory of Casey’s. Reviewers say that the nostalgic yet hopeful song perfectly captures the flying fireflies and the innocence of a time long since passed.
November in upstate New York is renowned for the storm clouds which darken every corner followed by impressive rain storms. The approaching clouds creating the shadows that don’t seem to leave, continually getting darker: “The Shadows That Surround Us” – until it is over and the sun returns. These images also symbolize the struggle one may have with depression and the constant fight to escape darkness.
“Evening Prayer” - the final blessing of a gathering of the faithful.
“Guetnachtgschichtli” is Swiss German for bedtime story. The song captures the atmosphere of an evening on top of a mountain surrounded by fresh air, only the sound of the cow bells ringing through the stillness of a peaceful night.
The last track on the album “A Fond Farewell” is a tribute to the end of a beautiful season; as well as a tribute to those we admire but are no longer with us yet remain in our hearts and minds forever.