When Sam Quinn was 19, he met Jill Andrews at a summer camp. Quinn played the guitar, and Andrews sang Gram Parsons with him; little did they know, it was the beginning of the everybodyfields, the band Quinn and Andrews built up from glorious dreams of hot summer days. Until, that is, those dreams died in a flash: On June 5th, 2009, the everybodyfields announced they were no more, that fans would have to settle with three albums of memories. Quinn and Andrews would no longer be singing together, they would no longer be trading instruments and jokes during their live shows.
It didn’t end with a bang, but rather a whimper. I was sad.
The final time I saw the everybodyfields perform, it was at Twangfest in St. Louis in June of 2008. The show was a fierce look at a band on the brink – they exploded into new songs, their overall feel was becoming more electric, and they even covered the hell out of Neil Young’s “Helpless” to end the show. They smiled a lot; I remember thinking, “this could be the beginning of something big, and they don’t even know it.”
I remember talking to Quinn and Andrews that night, but I never spoke to them when they were together. I didn’t put the pieces together then, but it’s obvious now: much like Jay Farrar and Jeff Tweedy, their songs and talents lived in separate universes. As beautiful as they sounded together, there was no room to breathe, and little room to live.
Unlike Andrews, who struck gold quickly with her first EP later in 2009, Quinn wasn’t sure was in store for him. A few songs were there, but his heart was not. As Quinn put it rather blatantly, “after years carrying a bass amp, and wearing goodwill neckties and explaining what my band sounded like to drunk people, I found some time to spend at home.”
Luckily, Quinn would rise again to record his new album, The Fake That Sunk a Thousand Ships, in an old milking stable. It’s a heartbreaker, for sure, one that Quinn calls “steeped in hopelessness, fortified with anguish, and iced with 10 years of immediate responsibility that fell into one’s lap seemingly overnight.”
When I listen to “Gun,” “Help Me,” or “Late The Other Night’ off Quinn’s latest, I hear a man breaking free, perhaps a last ditch attempt to free himself of whatever regret that still lingers. I hear a man shaking the hands with the pain that broke his dreams. Most importantly, I hear a man who is finally moving on.
Tour Dates: http://www.sambquinn.com/tour/
Album Discography: http://www.sambquinn.com/store/
He Said It: “The way that I figured, if I didn’t make this record, it would frustrate me with yet another plan that I can never seem to get finished. Doing this was a good way to stay busy and to get out some large scale project that was overtly daunting from the beginning. If I could get something like this done, it would take a little of the heat off of me for being a trifle loserish for what many would refer to as "too long." I also entertained the idea of going back to school and finishing my degree. I like to wear blazers with leather elbows. Professors wear those. I like that. I also considered the Navy for a warm minute. They wear different clothes all together.”