Sturgill Simpson Turns Apogee Studios into a Funky, Psychedelic Honkytonk

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There are few better rooms to experience live music (or a playback of recorded music, for that matter) than the Apogee Studio space.  We’re lucky to have had them host some special live sessions for us over the years.  And we get doubly lucky when we have a special artist, at the height of their powers, coming in to showcase music from their new album.  Such was the case this week when country troubadour Sturgill Simpson joined us there to play the entirety of his much-anticipated third album, A Sailor’s Guide to Earth, front-to-back, for an intimate introduction to his new record!

All eyes on Sturgill & band
All eyes on Sturgill & band

Simpson first hit our radar as we were programming our 2014 Summer Nights series at the Annenberg, which was centered around country music.  We quickly discovered that he was far too dynamic a songwriter & performer to be limited to just that genre, that his sound encompassed indie-, psychedelic- and straight-up rock elements that marked him as an artist to watch (he admits his own musical roots were as much based in punk rock as country, which explains his cover of Nirvana’s “In Bloom”).  Now, on the eve of the release of his new, even more dynamic album, we are so excited to share it, not only with the lucky few that saw the show this week, but the listenership at large when we air the complete session, including an intimate interview with Chris Douridas, on Morning Becomes Eclectic on Friday, April 22!  In the meantime, here are some glimpses of what took place with Simpson this week!

Chris Douridas & Sturgill Simpson, brothers from another mother
Chris Douridas & Sturgill Simpson, brothers from another mother
Rockin' out
Rockin’ out
Belting it out
Belting it out
Joking about screwing up Nirvana's lyrics
Joking about screwing up Nirvana’s lyrics
Slip sliding away
Slip sliding away
Bringin' it
Bringin’ it
Kind of blue
Kind of blue
Sturgill and the Family Simpson
Sturgill and the Family Simpson

(all photos by Dustin Downing)

KCRW’s Apogee Sessions featuring Sturgill Simpson, hosted by Chris Douridas
Broadcasts and streams on KCRW’s MBE: Friday, April 22

Welcome To Earth (Pollywog)
Breaker’s Roar
Keep It Between The Lines
Sea Stories
In Bloom (Nirvana cover)
Brace For Impact (Live A Little)
All Around You
Oh Sarah
Call To Arms

New album A Sailor’s Guide To Earth played from start to finish

Sturgill Simpson- Vocals, guitar
Miles Miller- Drums, band leader
Laur Joamet- Guitar
Chuck Bartels- Bass
Bobby Emmett- Keys
Brad Walker- Sax
Jon Ramm- Trombone
Scott Frock- Trumpet