The great Van Dyke Parks is currently gearing up for a tour of Australia with musician and all-round renaissance man Kinky Friedman. In the meantime, it seems he is about to release his first new material for some 15 years.
Consequence of Sound reports that Parks, 68 now, will release a special series of 7″ singles through his own label, Bananastan. These promise to be unique releases, as each will feature artwork and illustrations from some of Parks’ illustrious artist friends, including Frank Holmes, Charles Ray, Billy Edd Wheeler, Edd Ruscha and Art Spiegelman.
A press release quotes Parks as saying, “They are from highly different genres, each of them. They don’t cohere. They belong somewhere. But the emphasis on the visual art is a big, big deal. These are the pre-eminent American artists of our time. We’re calling it ‘Nouveau Niche.”
A total of six singles will be released over the course of a year, the first two being Dreaming of Paris/Wedding in Madagascar and Wall Street/Money Is King.
And there is yet more. Van will also put out a new compilation album, Arrangements by Van Dyke Parks, on September 20 (US). The album contains 15 songs and artists such as Arlo Guthrie, Bonnie Raitt, Lowell George and Ry Cooder.
Of course, Van Dyke Parks is most famous for his work with Brian Wilson and the Beach Boys in the 60s, but in more recent times he has worked with the likes of Joanna Newsom, Rufus Wainwright and Silverchair.
His tour with Kinky Friedman is:
Wednesday June 8, Clarendon Guesthouse, Katoomba, NSW
Thursday June 9, Clarendon Guesthouse, Katoomba, NSW
Friday June 10, The Basement, Sydney, NSW
Saturday June 11, The Basement, Sydney, NSW
Sunday June 12, Lizotte’s, Sydney, NSW
Monday June 13, Lizotte’s, Kincumber, NSW
Tuesday June 14, Lizotte’s, Newcastle, NSW
Thursday June 16, The Toff in Town, Melbourne, VIC
Friday June 17, Prince Bandroom, Melbourne, VIC
Saturday June 18, The Toff in Town, Melbourne, VIC
Monday June 20, Brass Monkey, Cronulla, NSW
Tuesday June 21, Brass Monkey, Cronulla, NSW
Friday June 24, Brisbane Powerhouse – Visy Theatre, Brisbane, QLD
Saturday June 25, Brisbane Powerhouse – Visy Theatre, Brisbane, QLD
Thursday June 30, Art Gallery of Western Australia, Perth, WA
Friday July 1, Governor Hindmarsh Hotel, Adelaide, SA