Chris Stamey

Video Premiere: Chris Stamey “(A Prisoner of this) Hopeless Love”

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Chris Stamey  – “(A Prisoner of this) Hopeless Love”

Chris Stamey

Americana Highways is hosting this video premiere of Chris Stamey’s song “(A Prisoner of this) Hopeless Love” from his forthcoming album The Great Escape, which is due to be released on July 7 via Redeye.  The album was produced, recorded, and mixed by Chris Stamey, with 4 tracks coproduced by Jeff Crawford, and one song coproduced by Terry Manning and Chris Stamey.  The album was mastered by Scott Craggs at Old Colony Mastering.

“(A Prisoner of This) Hopeless Love” is Caitlin Cary on harmonies; Libby Rodenbough on harmonies and fiddle; Don Dixon on acoustic bass; Will Rigby (Steve Earle) on drums; and Chris Stamey on acoustic guitar and piano, although the video features Greg Readling on acoustic bass.

Director of photography for the video was Santi Millån, with Julia Stamey consulting.  Chris Stamey still has the same youthful singing voice he’s always had, even as he sings wistfully of being a prisoner of hopelessness and the futility of recommitting oneself to someone who won’t return the feeling. But the situation is the protagonists’ own fault, as the dear one’s feeling died as a result of unforgivable betrayals, we find out.  The harmonies are haunting and the fiddle is strong and earthy, and the delivery is steadfast.  Check it out.

Here’s the story: I was listening to the Carter Family while looking at a picture of A.P. Carter’s homestead. And I started to imagine what a life there might have been like, what it might have been like to sit on that porch and write and sing those songs. And how lonely it might have been, if you had loved and lost in such isolation. I just slipped over to the piano and wrote this in one sitting. It’s far from typical of the album as a whole, an outlier really; there are no electric instruments in the mix, for one thing. But once Libby had played that lovely fiddle solo, I knew I wanted to include it. It was very influenced by the old Baptist Hymnal, which was as much a part of my musical education as anything. And by the songs of Boudleaux and Felice Bryant. I think there’s a lot of western North Carolina in this one, where my family is from, which is a deep part of the world, rich and expansive and somehow sad at the same time. I was also thinking of a Whiskeytown song, “The Battle,” because at the time I wrote this, I was literally sitting in the same room where it was recorded (now our daughter’s bedroom). A lot of music was made in that bedroom over the years! — Chris Stamey

You can order the music here:

Enjoy our previous coverage here: REVIEW: Peter Holsapple & Chris Stamey – Our Back Pages

Watch and listen to the video here, with the sheet music just below it.


(A Prisoner of this) Hopeless Love in C 8


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