When Eric “Roscoe” Ambel decided to cut his first new solo album in 12 years, the inspiration came from an unlikely source: a bar. Sure, musicians have been writing songs about bars since the guitar was invented, but this was no ordinary bar. Lakeside, which was released on April 1st, is a reference to the Lakeside Lounge Ambel co-owned and operated in New York’s East Village from 1996 until 2012 until he was forced to close it due to the steep rents and the unbridled gentrification that plagues the city. Though Ambel’s solo work has taken a backseat over the years to projects like the Del-Lords and the Yayhoos, studio guitar work for the likes of Steve Earle and Joan Jett, and his work as an acclaimed producer, Lakeside marks a return to form for the songwriter and guitarist.
Much like his beloved East Village haunt, which held a reputation throughout its existence for its kick ass juke box, affordable libations, live bands and cozy vibe, Lakeside is about reveling in the familiarity and nostalgia of the past as much as it is about creating pure rock and roll. The album features a handful of originals alongside covers like the Gillian Welch/David Rawlings favorite “Miss Ohio” and a reading of the Motown classic “Money”. One of the standout tunes is Ambel’s take on “Here Come My Love”. Written by his Del-Lords bandmate Scott Kempner, “Here Come My Love” starts off with a simple, upbeat acoustic hook that gives way to a laid back country tune with a touch of bluesy swagger that is punctuated with the kind of perfectly timed riff that only “Roscoe” could pull off.
Today we are excited to present the premiere of the new music video for “Here Come My Love” right here on Glide Magazine. The simple black and white video juxtaposes Ambel and his band playing in the studio with clips of a mysterious woman’s legs as she strolls the streets of New York. It was directed by none other than Jimbo Mathus, who also handled producing duties for Lakeside. This may be one of the album’s most fascinating attributes considering that Eric Ambel has previously held the role of producer on a handful of Mathus’ albums, and now the tables have turned. Clearly these two – both of whom are aces in the studio working with others as well as in their own work – have some serious chemistry.
Reflecting on his partnership with Mathus, Ambel says, “When I first worked with Jimbo Mathus back in 2012 producing his White Buffalo record, the idea came to me that if I was ever going to make another solo record I’d get Jimbo to produce. We’ve worked on various things together since White Buffalo including his records Dark Night of the Soul and Blue Healer. I finally got the chance to bring Jimbo back up to my studio, Cowboy Technical Services, to cut some songs on me last year and those sessions became the Lakeside LP. We cut a lot of the stuff just Jimbo and I with Jimbo playing drums and me singing and playing guitar. On the third day I brought in the guys who’ve played with me the most in NYC. Keith Christopher and I had played in the Yayhoos together. He was on bass and Phil Cimino, who’s played in my band and on a whole lot of the sessions I’ve produced, played drums. We were running songs from ‘my book’ and I showed Jimbo this Scott Kempner (Del-Lords) song that I always liked. Jimbo picked up the rhythm guitar and we all threw it down together. What you hear is me singing in the room and playing acoustic guitar with the band. The only overdub on this track is the lead guitar which I put on there as soon as we had listened to the song on the big speakers.”
Watch the music video for “Here Come My Love”
Eric Ambel’s Lakeside Lounge is out now. For more music and info check out ericambel.com.