Who’d have thought a 77-year-old Canadian singer-songwriter would be hovering near the top of the pop charts? Leonard Cohen was a poet and fiction writer who, in the 1960s, wrote songs like “Suzanne,” “So Long, Marianne” and “Bird on a Wire.” His unmistakable voice lulls you into a hypnotic spell on his new album, so we asked two fellow singers and Cohen fans to talk about what they hear on Old Ideas: Conor Oberst, best known for his band Bright Eyes, and Ron Sexsmith.
Team Love is proud to release the final version of the film, “One of My Kind.” To accompany this, we are including eleven songs compiled from the outtakes of both Mystic Valley Band sessions. We use the phrase, for the fans, because that is what this project is; a release for those that were lucky enough to experience the magic and excitement of the Mystic Valley Band when their jackets were still clean and their chemistry was bursting with ideas and potential.
Both CD and LP include a DVD of “One of My Kind: The Story of the Mystic Valley Band”, a full length documentary feature by Philip Schaffart. LP includes a CD version of the album as well. One of My Kind will not be in stores until May 15th, but pre-orders will ship out on May 1st.
Disc 1 (CD or LP)
Disc 2 (DVD)
about the film
Philip Schaffart was not hired by Conor Oberst to make the film “One of My Kind.” He was hired to make sure the guitars stayed in tune. But Phil had a video camera with him as the Mystic Valley Band came together for the first time at Valle Místico in Tepoztlán, Mexico in January of 2008 and so he started filming what he sensed was something special.
“When I started filming, none of us had the intentions of turning what was being shot into a film,” says Phil, “but the things we were seeing, feeling and capturing with the music proved to be inspiring in ways we were not prepared for.” Later that year after touring for the Conor’s self-titled Merge release the Mystic Valley Band went back into the studio, this time at the Sonic Ranch outside of El Paso, Texas where they recorded their follow-up release, “Outer South.”
This album was a reflection of what the MVB had become over the preceding 10 months. Now, the song writing was no longer Conor’s sole responsibility as the other members of the band all spread their own musical and compositional wings. All the while, Phil continued to film what was going on with the band, capturing the year of touring, the almond orchards in Texas, the temples and steep cliffs of Mexico and the evolution of a group of musicians that started as not much more than an idea for a different way to make a record, and ended up being a fully realized rock band.
“Something was happening between the six members of the band musically that was effortless and natural in a way I had not seen before;” Phil continues: “In Texas we started thinking that the footage could be turned into a documentary film.” Phil returned to Omaha later and enlisted the help of the H Minus Production team and after many grueling hours in the edit suite, a film was born.