Ethan Daniel Davidson

The kind of music you hear on Crows is the kind of music best made by someone with a touch of gray in the temples. In the way it mixes smart, atmospheric, and vaguely Americana-ish sounds, it might remind you of Jim White, Destroyer, Sparklehorse, or even Bobby Charles. It is sophisticated without being diluted. “Love should be fair and love should share, but it don’t share equally/ What’s yours is mine and you should know, no one feeds my crows but me,” Davidson sings on “My Crows.” This is a major singer-songwriter, but one who remains relatively unknown outside of his native Detroit.

Davidson spent decades on his music, in as self-effacing a way as possible. Freed from a personal need to pursue fame or fortune, he followed his obsessions — Jewish law, basketball history, riding the rails, and American music. He has put more miles into touring than almost anyone you can name, and has driven around every corner of the country in a van for the better part of a decade, playing dive bars that only wish they could be called dive bars, and sleeping out under the stars.

Here we have Crows, the first record released by another label – Blue Arrow, the same folks who’ve recently brought you new music from Jonathan Richman and Jon Langford. And while its two predecessors, Drawnigh and Silvertooth, consciously avoided any country material, this album was made with the idea that it would be both cosmic and country.

Inspired by a lifetime of train travel, Crows buzzes with the intersection of pedal steel, fuzz guitar, and feedback. The songs are filled with tales of old 44s, black roads, men born in the shadows of mountains, breaths held on dark nights, fences nine miles wide, and coyotes crouching at doors.

Obvious musical comparisons usually include Willie Nelson, Gene Clark, Emmylou Harris and Leonard Cohen, but Ethan would list poet Edward Dorn, Hassidic Existentialist philosopher Martin Buber, and Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch as conceptual and lyrical inspiration on a song like “My Own Bad.”

Crows will be available on vinyl, CD, and download from Cleveland’s Blue Arrow Records. Produced by Warren Defever (His Name Is Alive).

Praise for Davidson’s previous releases:

“Ethan Daniel Davidson is that kind of legendary folk singer who supposedly died off a generation or two ago” – Magnet

“After years as a nomadic bohemian — living in the Alaskan wilderness, trading firewood for moose meat, hopping cargo ships to Europe — with home base at an isolated Alaska cabin — 270 miles from electricity — he crisscrossed the country for six years in a van, playing more than 900 shows and giving away 50,000 albums.” – Detroit Free Press

“Ethan Daniel Davidson is some sort of one man Calexico” 
– Detroit Metro Times


IMAGES: To download, click above. Press photo credit to Gretchen Davidson


Blue Arrow Records