Here’s some clips from each track on the EP
Thanks to Folk Radio UK for making Trees Hug Bees their Song of the Day and premiering the video with these words:
‘Our Song of the Day features on the forthcoming debut EP Sleeping Leaves from the JEANES ‘collective’. Since this EP arrived I’ve been keen to share it, so it came as a bonus when we were asked if we’d like to premiere the new video Trees Hugs Bees which you can watch above…..We are not alone in our admiration for Russell Jeanes’ folk gems which contain some of the sweetest sounds we’ve heard in a very long time. Tom Robinson was smitten from his first listen and has been incredibly supportive.’
No stranger to the airwaves, Jeanes ‘perfectly crafted’ musical creations have caught the ear and support of not only a few thousand soundcloud listeners, but also respected purveyor of new music, Tom Robinson, who has played a number of the tracks, with a total of six plays so far on his BBC 6 Music shows.
Russell Jeanes’ native Yorkshire BBC Introducing stations have also followed suit.
However, these songs have never been released in the public domain other than via streaming on soundcloud and Folkstock Records have the unique pleasure of sharing these works of art and helping them attract the recognition they deserve. The EP Sleeping Leaves and singles are being released in the four weeks up to and including 16th June 2017.
‘Sleeping Leaves’ tells stories of breathing trees, sleeping fields and drunken bees. The songs have been brought to life in homes, gardens & summer fields across Europe & America by an enchanting collective of female DIY artists, each lovingly chosen by Russel Jeanes for their beautifully unique voices.
They say that everyone has a book in them. Perhaps that also applies to music? Russell Jeanes is about to release an EP of songs which have been a life time in the making. Starting off as sensitive poems written in his adolescence which reveal his love of the natural world, thirty years later the father and husband embarked on a project which would take him and his collaborators seven years of blood, sweat and tears to bring to fruition.
Spurred into action following the discovery of the long lost snippets of recording and poems unearthed when he moved to a cottage nestling in the beautiful woodlands of West Yorkshire, Russell set about converting one of his poems he found sleeping in the leaves of an old book, fittingly The Secret of Plants, into a song.
Feeling that his own voice was not the right vehicle for the song, Russell engaged the talents of a singer he found almost by chance on soundcloud.
Russ found a song called (‘warm august wind’) he liked the title of and clicked on the link to the artist and found himself captivated by the multi-talented Catherine Hershey, and was struck by a voice he realised he had envisioned singing his song, Simple Jayne. Having painstakingly created a backing track and guide vocals. Russ approached the singer. Thankfully Catherine agreed to take a listen and the next thing Russ knew, Catherine had sent a DIY recording and immediately Russ knew magic had been created. When other commitments permitted, Catherine turned her attention to the second track on the EP, Barley, Hops & Yeast, adding harmonising vocals to her interpretation which created a poignant sense of yearning within the track, while Russ worked on Simple Jayne.
Catherine’s vocal recording inadvertently captured the sound of a Parisian birdsong through her apartment window. Russ was so captivated by the blackbird immortalised on Catherine’s recording that he added more morning birdsong.
This heady dose of nature remains to this day and can be enjoyed on the finished recording! The first track was born.
Russ posted the track on soundcloud and in a fit of uncharacteristic self promotion, he also submitted the track to Tom Robinson’s Fresh on the Net uploader, which is the respected portal for new music which involves music lovers and critics picking their ‘fresh Faves’ each week. When Tom heard Simple Jayne, it not only got selected into that week’s Fresh Faves (which routinely whittles 200 acts down to a lucky handful), but he played it on his BBC 6 Music Show on both Mixtape and Sunday evening show.
Tom also then picked it as one of his mixtape faves of 2014 on his Christmas show.
Excited and somewhat surprised by the unexpected success, but driven by wanting to get the due recognition and credit for the singer who had transformed his songs, Russ started to search for other voices to bring two other tracks to life. Emily Grace Zornado put her mark on Smiles With Her Eyes and recorded her vocals outside in the Danielson National Park in the States and Léa Decan co-created an entrancing Trees Hug Bees with Russ and Tom Sidebottom over a period of months, variously in China, Paris and Belgium. Finally, thanks to hours of painstaking work with Tom Sidebottom, Russ is in a position, to release four tracks for the first time, on iTunes, Spotify and the usual digital channels, and encouraged by his label Folkstock Records, is also making physical cds of the collaborative song collection, which he has entitled Sleeping Leaves which will be released on 16th June 2017.
Jeanes is a collective of the DIY artists below.
Russell Jeanes is a graphic designer, film maker & poet from Yorkshire and also a new music champion for Fresh On The Net.
Catherine Hershey is a French-American artist, illustrator, songwriter and singer.
She is a long time friend of Kate Stables. Catherine illustrated ‘this is the kit’s’ album for ‘Bashed Out’.
Russ heard Catherine’s songs and fell ‘head over heels’ with her work, sending her a message about his passion for her songs – Catherine responded saying she found Russell’s songs ‘warm and soothing’. This was the start of their recordings and friendship.
Emily Grace Zornado is a musician, playwright, director, and music educator in Danielson, Connecticut, America.
Russ heard Emily’s cover version of ‘hushabye mountain’ and was utterly captivated. Emily recorded ‘smiles with her eyes’ in the summer fields of Danielson, using ukulele punctuated with her rich layered harmonies. Russ first heard Emily’s arrangement cycling through the fields of Ile de Ré.
Léa Decan is a talented artist songwriter, singer and is currently studying illustration in Brussels.
Russ found a track of Léa’s called Timothée and then discovered that Léa really loved his poem/song ‘trees hug bees’. Léa developed the song in Paris, Brussels and China. Russ worked separately with Tom Sidebottom on strings richly inspired by English Classical music.
Scott Fraser is a guitarist and was enthusiastic about Russ’ poems/songs from the first, and was absolutely fundamental in their development.
Scott crafted guitar patterns from Russell’s initial ideas.
Tom Sidebottom is a Yorkshire based string arranger and music lecturer. Tom has patiently and skillfully developed and recorded arrangements developing Russ’ ideas.
The four tracks on this EP will be released complete on 16th June as a physical cd available from Folkstock records website www.folkstockrecords.com and Russell Jeane’s website – www.jeanes.blue. However each track will also be available each Friday from 26th May, 2nd , 9th and 16th of June, released in the order they are presented on the cd.
All songs written and arranged by Russell Jeanes. Strings by Tom Sidebottom and Russell Jeanes. All guitar arrangements by Scott Fraser and Russell Jeanes.
1. Simple Jayne – vocals Catherine Hershey (26th May release)
2. Barley, Hops and Yeast – vocals Catherine Hershey (2nd June release)
3. Smiles with her Eyes – vocals and ukulele Emily Grace Zornado (9th June release)
4. Trees Hug Bees – vocals and guitar Lea Decan (16th June release)
‘Nobody out there sounds quite like Russ Jeanes, the taste of honey is almost tangible on Trees Hug Bees. Pure pastoral nectar from the heart of Northern England. Accept no substitute’. Tom Robinson, BBC 6 Music.
Please contact Helen Meissner
firstname.lastname@example.org about this recording
and it’s release or copies for radio/reviews.