Producer and multi-instrumentalist Lorenzo Wolff has teamed up with Bartees Strange for a cover of Judee Sill’s ‘The Pearl’. Their rendition is taken from Wolff’s newly announced tribute album, Down Where The Valleys Are Low: Another Otherworld For Judee Sill, which features seven new interpretations of Sill’s songs. Check out Lorenzo Wolff and Bartees Strange’s version of ‘The Pearl’ below, along with the original.
“The more I learned about Sill, the clearer the chasm between the artist and her art became,” Wolff said in a statement (via Glide Magazine). “Her life was not only too short, but often nasty and brutish, while her music was pristine, elevated onto an altogether higher plane … [and her songs] were like a gymnasium she’d built for herself to exorcise and exercise her demons.”
On covering ‘The Pearl’, he added: “Anyone who’s had someone in their life who’s fighting against addiction knows what “The Pearl” is about. It’s not introspection from the perspective of an addict, it’s the story that your friend tells you before she goes out to cop again… I had seen [Bartees Strange] in his hardcore band Stay Inside and expected a much more aggressive delivery. Instead we talked about his childhood playing in the country bands of Mustang, Oklahoma, and his love of roots music. After we finished the session he said, “No one ever asks me to sing country music.””
Down Where The Valleys Are Low: Another Otherworld For Judee Sill is out March 12 via StorySound Records. In addtion to Bartees Strange, it includes contributions from Bobby Hawk, Osei Essed, Mary-Elaine Jenkins, Grace McLean, Kate Ferber, Emily Holden, and Michael Cerveris.
Bartees Strange, who is set to make his TV debut on Late Night With Seth Meyers tonight, released his debut album Live Forever in October 2020. It was preceded by the The Nationals covers EP Say Goodbye To Pretty Boy. More recently, he also reworked Samia’s ‘Pool’.