How John Muir and Nature Inspired Bon Iver Drummer S. Carey


"I was drawing from experiences I had, some of them were really recent and others were digging into my past quite a ways. With that there were some joyous parts, celebrating some places, really being nostalgic about my childhood and going on road trips with my dad," he says. "But also I feel like there are a lot of darker things, partially because I really like writing sad music, and some of those experiences I've had that weren't good, that were growing experiences. It's a whole range, from my childhood and even up to right now."

Carey, who also plays drums and sings in Bon Iver, says the experiences that led to his first and second albums were so different that he pushed to make the records very different. All We Grow came from a time when he'd suddenly become a world traveler, those experiences finding their way into songs.

"Starting out going from a 22-year-old college student to pretty much touring the country and then Europe and then Australia, all within a couple years, was a huge experience for me. That's really where the beginnings of All We Grow came from, those experiences and being really inspired and being exposed to a bunch of new music," he says. "We'd play festivals and I'd always go check out all these other bands that were up and coming. They were totally inspiring because they were just doing it. When you see people having success and owning their craft and their creativity I was extremely inspired by that."

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Cameron Wittig

Carey put together the songs for Range of Light over a two-year period, which allowed for more ideas - musically and lyrically - to have their impact on the album. And even as Carey was growing more confident in his own singing and songwriting voice, his touring band became more involved in the music.

"It was a great experience to have them around and have their input," he says. "We recorded in a studio this time, which changes the vibe and the sound quality a lot and makes it that much richer. We'd go in for three or four days at a time and do a couple songs and then I'd sit with them and figure out how to make them better and write lyrics.

"I think I did want to do something that was a little more expansive and more detailed at the same time. All in all it was definitely a different creative experience and I feel like the songs and the whole vibe is really similar, but it's just more thought out and more textured" he says.

S. Carey is scheduled to perform Thursday, July 10, at Crescent Ballroom. With The Pines opens. Tickets are $12 in advance, $15 day of show.

Find any show in Metro Phoenix via our extensive online concert calendar.

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