Acclaimed singer/songwriter Josh Ritter’s new EP, ‘See Here, I Have Built You A Mansion’, featuring eight rare and previously unreleased songs, is set for release on August 28. In conjunction with the announcement, Ritter has debuted ‘Time Is Wasting’ listen HERE. Pre-order See Here, I Have Built You A Mansion HERE, which includes limited edition CD and vinyl packages.
In addition to ‘Time Is Wasting’, the ‘See Here, I Have Built You A Mansion’ EP features ‘Haunt,’ ‘Heaven Knows,’ ‘Miles Away’ and ‘Waiting On You’ as well as a live version of ‘Lawrence, Kansas’ and a cover of Dire Straits’ ‘Brothers In Arms.’
“See Here, I Have Built You A Mansion is a collection of songs and performances that I love from the previous several years. I did the artwork a while back, and the title just popped into my head. I’ve really been missing making music with my band. On record or live, it’s always an adventure,” Ritter notes.
“I wrote ‘Time Is Wasting’ for a movie. The song didn’t get used but I ended up thinking about it again as COVID lockdown stretched away in front of us. The rest of the songs soon fell into place behind it. There is a lot of time and distance and farewell on these recordings. ‘Miles Away’ is all about physical and emotional distance, while ‘Brothers In Arms,’ one of my favorite Mark Knopfler songs, is a pathos-filled, Shakespearian rumination on battle and memory. ‘Haunt’ and ‘Waiting on You’ were both recorded with the Royal City Band during the Gathering sessions, and ‘Heaven Knows’ features the mighty Josh Kaufman on slide guitar. I initially wrote ‘Be of Good Heart’ for Joan Baez’s final album, but I loved it so much that I wanted to do a recording with my band as well. Finally, ‘Lawrence, Kansas,’ which was recorded live in Lawrence, Kansas, is one of my earlies compositions. I feel lucky to work with musicians and play for audiences who can continue to breathe new life into even my oldest songs,” he furthers.
In response to COVID-19, Ritter’s weekly “Silo Sessions” livestream performance series has generated over $150,000 to date for various charities including Foodbank NYC, WinNYC and Feeding America. Watch the weekly solo acoustic series, which has been streamed over 500,000 times, HERE.
Over the course of his career Ritter has released ten full-length albums including 2019’s ‘Fever Breaks’, which was produced by Jason Isbell and features Amanda Shires along with Isbell’s band, the 400 Unit. Released to widespread acclaim, the album debuted at #4 on Billboard’s Americana/ Folk Albums Chart, #5 on Independent Albums Chart, #14 on Top Current Albums Chart and appeared on the Billboard 200. Rolling Stone raved, “It’s classic Ritter on Muscle Shoals-bred steroids,” while the Associated Press heralded, “There have been plenty of highlights in Ritter’s nearly 20-year recording career but it’s the intensity of the music and imagery that makes Fever Breaks an especially engaging outing.”
In 2015 Ritter began a close collaboration with Bob Weir and went on to write or co-write many of the 12 songs on Weir’s acclaimed 2016 solo album, Blue Mountain. Pitchfork called the album “quietly adventurous, wise, and a welcome late-career turn,” while Entertainment Weekly described it as “a moving group of tunes worthy of any campfire.”
In addition to his work as a musician, Ritter made his debut as a published author in 2011 with his novel Bright’s Passage (Dial Press/Random House), which was a national best-seller. Stephen King wrote in The New York Times Book Review that Bright’s Passage “shines with a compressed lyricism that recalls Ray Bradbury in his prime…This is the work of a gifted novelist.”
SEE HERE, I HAVE BUILT YOU A MANSION TRACKLIST
Time Is Wasting
Haunt (from the Gathering sessions)
Heaven Knows (from the Gathering sessions)
Waitin On You (B-side track)
Be Of Good Heart (written for Joan Baez’s Whistle Down The Wind)
Brothers In Arms (Dire Straits cover recorded live in during soundcheck)
Lawrence, Kansas (recorded live in Lawrence, KS)