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New York, the Mecca of musicians, gained a new resident when Patrick Freeman, a mainstay of the Cork Music scene, moved to Brooklyn in November 2012. Patrick is one of the founder members of the Jawbone session that play every Wednesday in The Pavilion; a former member of John Blek & The Rats; but is first and foremost a singer-songwriter. He is currently in Ireland for a three-week tour with a brand new record, Perfect Fit EP, which was released in January.
When he moved over Patrick immersed himself in the music scene immediately, “the EP hadn’t been completed when I arrived, so I showed up in New York with a guitar on my back as a complete unknown. There are some of the finest players in the world working hard just to get the rent paid, so I was definitely a small fish, a minnow. A few people in Cork told me to hook up with Niall Connolly when I went over and he’s been very generous in terms of sharing his knowledge and getting work. He’s also found the time to write great songs and be a good person. I also met some great players just hanging around in Brooklyn, particularly a bar called Skinny Dennis.”
Patrick credits this deep pool of talent has helped him develop his craft, “seeing the vast quantity and varying quality that’s out there has helped me figure out what my thing is, what I’m good at”, but he does reflect that Cork had certain traits that is lacking in the Big Apple, “I certainly miss the scene in Cork at times and the guys I used to play with regularly. Its oft been said, but for a city of its size the quality and variety of music is impressive. The openness to collaborate between musicians of disparate musical tastes is an admirable aspect of the Cork scene. In New York there are scenes for any music you can think of but surprisingly there doesn’t seem to be a whole lot of cross pollination. On the other hand you can be guaranteed there’s a world-class musician playing somewhere every night of the week.
The recording process of the EP neatly reflects his transition from working in his old home and new one, “it all started way back in 2012 in O Emperor’s studio Big Skin HQ. The boys were in the middle of making their Vitreous album and whenever they weren’t working Paul and myself would go in and try some ideas. It wasn’t complete by the time I was leaving for New York and so I tidied up the tracks in Soundtronics studios over there. From initial sessions to final master it took about a year, it was all ad hoc and informal but I’m fairly happy with the results.”
Patrick Freeman’s EP can be heard via http://www.patrickfreemanmusic.com; he plays with a band made up of members of O Emperor and Dave Murphy on Pedal Steel in Couglans on Douglas Street on Friday 7 February.