The David Wax Museum – Carpenter Bird [Album Review]

by Woody on October 2, 2009

wax

When David Wax emailed us earlier this year, I was immediately taken with his debut LP – specifically the song “There Was a Bridge.” It was a perfect blend of Americana and traditional Mexican folk music, bringing Calexico to mind.

The new album, Carpenter Bird, continues along that path and Wax’s songs remain as earnest as his initial effort. Throughout the album, mandolins and dobros are entwined with fiddles and horns, but never stepping on each other’s toes. There’s a subtle little jam at the end of “Beekeeper” where the fiddle and horn are dancing around the mandolin that is extremely tasty.

The mp3 below, “Colas,” is based on a traditional son jarocho song from southern Veracruz called “El Colas.” Wax kept one of the traditional verses in Spanish, translated one to English, and then wrote some new verses and a new chorus.

“Persimmon Tree” is another winner with Wax harmonizing with the excellent Sue Slezak who chips in on vocals and fiddle throughout the album. The song is buoyed by a baritone sax riff by guest Alec Spigleman that gives the tune the latin flavor.

Wax does a great job of giving his compositions the right amount of Mexican flavor. Combined with his talented supporting Museum of Sue Slezak, Greg Glassman and Jiro Kokobu, he has put out a uniquely tremendous album. These guys are all the rage in the Boston area and are embarking on an East Coast tour. They just had two sold out shows at Club Passim in Boston to celebrate the release of Carpenter Bird. I suggest checking them out as they make their ascent on the musical landscape.

The David Wax Museum – Colas

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Angela October 28, 2009 at 2:32 pm

Hey there,
I have tried exceptionally hard to find a preview OR this song to purchase on the net. My husband and I heard it played on the Coffeehouse channel of Sirius Satellite Radio a day in the first week of October. We loved it – even hearing it for just the first time (usually it takes a good 3 -4 times before you really like a song) Anyway… Its our 10 yr anniversary this Friday (30th) and I want to download, or purchase this song, but cannot find it anywhere. If anyone can point me in the right direction, Iwould be indebted! Thanks in advance for your help
Angela Kerzman
Richmond, MN

Angela October 28, 2009 at 2:33 pm

I am so silly… forgot to mention the name of the song in my previous msg:

The David Wax Museum, When you are still!

Thanks again,

Angela Kerzman
Richmond, MN

Suz Slezak October 29, 2009 at 2:11 pm

Hi Angela,

You can purchase the album at http://www.davidwaxmuseum.com or send and email to davidwaxmuseum@gmail.com. We are thrilled that you like “When You Are Still” and hope you enjoy the rest of the songs as well!

Cheers!
Suz Slezak
The David Wax Museum

Erin November 30, 2009 at 10:23 am

I too am desperately seraching for a way to get ahold of “When You Are Still.” I have absolutely fallen in love with that song… When will it be available? Thanks!

Erin Lassley December 3, 2009 at 8:07 pm

I’m appalled at the lack of information about When You Are Still. I searched google and lost sleep trying to find the origins of this song. I finally found it and have typed in the lyrics but I know I’m not hearing something right in the line about the cornstalks. Here are lyrics and hopefully Google will get the results posted so others can find the song easier than I could.

When You Are Still by The David Wax Museum

How I love how I love when you are still
Like a bird like a bird on my window sill
Like a bee like a bee in a daffodil
How I love how I love when you are still

Still as a bee, yes and I can see
Well I fell for you way back when
You are so beautiful I’ve tried to be dutiful
To the lovers that might have been

How I love how I love when you are still
Like a bird like a bird on my window sill
Like a bee like a bee in a daffodil
How I love how I love when you are still

’cause when you’re still I can fill
You you up like a pitcher with no brim
Still water shows us what we know
Our dreams however inarticulate and dim

How I love how I love when you are still
Like a bird like a bird on my window sill
Like a bee like a bee in a daffodil
How I love how I love when you are still

’cause when we tome? it’s cornstalks
You sway as they do with the breeze
The world I’ve built walks on stilts
Oh watch how it falls down with such ease

How I love how I love when you are still
Like a bird like a bird on my window sill
Like a bee like a bee in a daffodil
How I love how I love when you are still

I’ve got the chords figured out but don’t have them transcribed yet. If anyone is interested, please email me at silent@beatricene.com Thanks! It’s a great song and deserves more credit!!!

Katie December 7, 2009 at 6:35 pm

I am so happy to finally find this site and who sings my new favorite song When You Are Still! (I heard it on Sirius too). I can’t believe how hard I had to look to track it down. I even emailed Sirius 🙂 I am going to buy the CD just for this song but based on this review I am sure I’ll like the rest.

Deidra February 5, 2011 at 3:28 pm

Does anyone know the lyrics to “Colas”….thanks!

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