In these trying modern times, real, honest music and art can draw people of vast backgrounds and cultures together for understanding and empathy. Singer-songwriter Andrew Weiss clings to and cherishes moments of intimacy, hard conversations, and emotional currency through his songwriting. A classic glow silhouettes Weiss’s storytelling. He fuses such a throwback warmth and charm right into the work, while offering new perspectives on tried and true subjects. His influences run the gamut – from Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers to Cheap Trick to Buffalo Springfield to The Byrds.
By the release date of his latest LP The Golden Age of Love & Chemistry back in late March, the world was only just beginning to realize the long-term effects that COVID-19 would wreak. Distraught by the consistent flow of bad news, and knowing that it would be months, at the very least, before returning to a recording studio again, Weiss decided to record an album at home, inspired to generate something positive amidst this swarm of bad news.
With the goal in mind of picking a handful of songs, some written before quarantine, some written during, Weiss began recording the Lookout Mountain EP in April. After Weiss recorded his parts, he sent the songs to Friends Phil Anthony, Jesse Kessler, and Jake Albi, who then recorded their parts, quarantined in their home studios. “When I reached out to them about working on this project together, each of them was so willing and glad to be a part of it,” Weiss says. “Nobody was really sure when we’d be able to make music in person with each other again, and this was the next best thing. This project gave us a reason to talk to each other more often, and during a time where everyone felt lonely, that was invaluable.”
The Lookout Mountain EP was completed in July, after mastering engineer Eric Boulanger of Bakery Mastering (Green Day, Neil Young, Mandy Moore) put his finishing touches on the tracks.
With the WTF year of 2020 still at the plate for another three months, its time to let the sly and soulful folk of Andrew Weiss take over. Glide is thrilled to premiere the earnest “Lookout Mountain”, where Weiss makes his early 70’s Neil Young meets Fleet Foxes take on indie-folk.
The song form something of a journal entry from quarantine laying out Weiss‘ thoughts on the current state of the world. He sings “I’m always afraid someone will ask me // what side are you on?” referencing our increasingly-polarized views on the world as we all sit in isolation. It’s a dark theme, but the messaging is optimistic & calls for unity throughout.
Read below on how Weiss describes how Lookout Mountain” was uniquely influenced by Led Zeppelin..
When I was a teenager, one of my favorite music films to watch was Led Zeppelin’s The Song Remains The Same. Before they start ‘Stairway To Heaven,’ Robert Plant introduces the song by saying, ‘I think this is a song of hope.’ I was obviously aware of the legend that is ‘Stairway’ as I watched this film, and it seemed silly to me to introduce this legendary song that needed no introduction. However, reflecting back on this, it was such a nice sentiment and provided a new lens for me to appreciate this song.
I wrote ‘Lookout Mountain’ in January 2020, before the word ‘pandemic’ was on everyone’s lips. To me, Lookout Mountain is a utopia where everything is okay. You can’t find that on a map. But the world has learned a lot about itself over the past few months, and I’m hoping we are better for it. It seemed fitting to record this song during quarantine, as the whole world was experiencing being stuck inside together, everyone was dreaming of their own utopia. Once the song was finished being recorded and it was ready to go out into the world, my mind was transported back to Robert Plant’s introduction of a song that brought so many people together. This is a song of hope.