Americana Highways brings you this premiere of Raveis Kole’s song “Wherever You Go,” from their forthcoming album In the Moment (Bop Records). The album was produced and arranged by Laurie Raveis, Dennis Kole and Matt Smith; mixed by Matt Smith at 6 String Ranch in Austin; and mastered by Nick Landis. The album will be released on April 28, and the song will be available on April 20.
“Wherever You Go” is Laurie Raveis on vocals, and Martin acoustic guitar; Dennis Kole on vocals, and banjo.
We had a chance to chat briefly with both Laurie Raveis and Dennis Kole about the song. The link to listen appears just beneath the interview.
Americana Highways: What prompted you to write this song? What inspired it? What is its message?
Dennis Kole: We find it all too easy to become caught up in the whirlwind of stimulation that is everyday life. This “modern life disease” has an antidote: which is to remain aware of how we feel, to act with intention, and to recognize and celebrate our connection with others. At a time when many people are feeling isolated and are looking inward for comfort and/or distraction, we want to put out the message that nurturing our emotional connection with other people and finding community will add depth and meaning to our lives.
AH: What kind of a vibe were you going for on this song? How does the final version differ from what you imagined it might be before you went into the studio?
Laurie Raveis: We wanted the vibe of the song to mirror the story of the lyrics by journeying from an initial inward focus to expand outward into exploring a sense of togetherness and community. The song goes through a cycle of five consecutive key changes which makes it deceptively challenging to both sing and to perform, especially for the vocal harmonies and the instrumental turnarounds. While all of this is going on, we gradually add in a foot drum, the tambourine and, finally, hand claps to support the theme of developing connected interdependence. While the lyrics are relatively simple and easy to follow, the arrangement is anything but simple for two people to execute!
AH: How did this song come together when you wrote it? What was the songwriting process like?
Dennis Kole: As songwriters, we both like to put familiar things together in unfamiliar ways. “Wherever You Go” combines the internal focus of a zen retreat or mindfulness meditation with the boisterous sense of community and “call and response” engagement of an old time tent revival meeting (which no Zoom call has ever successfully reproduced). The unadorned simplicity and old Americana feel of the guitar and banjo instrumentation provide a rough hewn sonic canvas for the “feel good” authenticity of the lyrics.
AH: What is coming up next for Raveis Kole?
Laurie Raveis: “Wherever You Go” is the final single release from our forthcoming album In The Moment which will be released on April 28, 2023. In The Moment is a collection of eight original songs that blend poetic, evocative lyrics with both familiar and eclectic acoustic instrumentation from the Americana/Folk tradition. We wanted to create a record that sounds like us as a duo playing live, adding playful and punchy harmonies to counterpoint Dennis’ baritone and my mezzo soprano vocals. The album is a collection of stories and songs that you can believe in! In support of the album release, we’ll be setting up festival touring dates, performing at house concert events, and will be coming soon to a venue near you!
Thanks for speaking with us, Raveis Kole! In this song, hand claps lend a certain natural punctuation, as the music feels very earthy and traditional. Raveis Kole is onto something we all need, whether we know it or not.
“We all stand taller when we bend to help another / Someone’s sister someone’s brother / We all need a helping hand / We all are stronger, when we join with one another / Someone’s father someone’s mother / We all need a helping hand.”
It’ll put a smile on your face and a bounce in your step.
Find more information and pre-save their music here: http://distrokid.com/hyperfollow/raveiskole/wherever-you-go