SONG PREMIERE: Tommy Alexander Collaborates with Mike Coykendall For Sparse Folk Track “I Blame Myself”


Alexander has been staying busy these days with a new LP called Waves due out June 5th. Today Glide is excited to offer an exclusive premiere of “I Blame Myself,” one of the standout tracks on the new record. For this song, Alexander sings with a brooding and vulnerable folk sensibility that is bolstered by sparse, atmospheric instrumentation. Enlisting   

“I wrote this song for our weekly open mic. I wanted something new to share. After sign-up, I sat in the side room at Laurelthirst Pub and started writing. I had the first line and a melody, so I was building around a mood. One of my favorite aspects of this particular open mic is that you are supported to take chances. I feel like I got lucky with this one. I was able to tap into a different voice than I normally use. The song went over well and felt great to sing. I think the words speak to something that most people can relate to. The feeling of regret in a break-up and reaching a point where the anger you’ve been directing at another subsides and you realize that there is only one person to blame. It’s not a song of self pity, but more a song about taking responsibility for yourself,” says Alexander.

“I needed another song for Waves, so the next day I asked Mike (Coykendall) if he could set me up at our studio space to do some 4 track recording. It’s a great setup, Mike gets the 4 track sounding great and steps out for a bit. I am able to sit in there alone and record my parts. Mike returned an hour or so later and he put down some light drums and synth. I heard a slight blip on the tape at the very beginning and really liked it. Mike grabbed a pot or pan from the kitchen and got a perfect sound out of it. He’s a brilliant man.”

As for working with Coykendall, Alexander has this to say: “He is one of my dearest friends. The long story short on how we connected still kind of boggles my mind. I briefly met Mike in 2012 after an M. Ward concert. He was touring, playing bass and guitar with M. Ward. After the show, I gave him my demo and thanked him for the great night of music. A few years later I moved to Portland, Oregon, where I ran into Mike at a neighborhood bar. After talking a bit it hit me that this is the guy I gave my demo to years back. Mike then tells a funny joke about getting handed demo’s on tour, ‘We always give them two spins. One in the CD player, and one out the window!’ We have since made multiple records together, we share studio space, and he’s toured with my band. He’s a world class recording artist and he is a world class human.”

Alexander himself hasn’t been shy about making waves on the indie music scene. The 34 year old tunesmith is the founder and operator of Pilot Light Booking, a booking agency based in Portland, Oregon that boasts an impressive roster of up and coming talent.

“I started off booking short runs for a couple friends of mine. Willy Tea Taylor was the first one and then I booked a tour for Whiskerman. That was January of 2018 when Taylor Kingman and I had the idea to start a booking agency. I had no idea what I was getting into or how it would grow. As of today, there are forty bands, four booking agents, and a handful of artists who represent themselves through the company. It’s been a ton of work, but it’s a dream come true. I am excited to watch it continue to grow and see the community help more inspiring artists. We have a brilliant group of people, it’s a big and beautiful extended family.”



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