Landon Pigg to release Coffee Shop
Listeners who have been charmed by Landon Pigg's gorgeous, wistful "Falling In Love At a Coffee Shop"--a track that's exploded since being featured in a late-2007 "A Diamond Is Forever" campaign (it's been downloaded more than 122,000 times on iTunes and streamed more than 321,000 times on MySpace)--might be surprised to learn that the singer-songwriter's first-ever song featured lyrics about the far less sensitive topics of Nintendo 64s and deodorant. The 24-year-old Nashville native has refined his songwriting technique over the years, but his offbeat aesthetic hasn't been lost in translation.
Artist: Landon Pigg
Title: Coffee Shop
Release date: 05/3/08
Single: Falling In Love At A Coffee Shop
Buy at: Amazon
Nashville native Pigg, 24, started penning his own songs in high school, inspired by "crushes that were devastating," and before long he was turning out two EPs (the Magritte-inspired This Is a Pigg and Connect Sets) and working on his first full-length for RCA, 2006's LP.
Pigg cryptically explains that the dozen tracks on LP are "songs that I wrote for my friends that they didn't know I wrote for them." Opener "Can't Let Go," an aching look at a fizzled relationship, recalls Coldplay with its soaring vocals and powerfully strummed guitars. Pigg shows off why his limber tenor has been compared to Thom Yorke's on the somber "Sailed On," a track that soundtracked an intense moment on Grey's Anatomy: "I got to usher somebody on into the afterlife," Pigg explains.
"Coffee Shop" has finally been released on disc on Pigg's EP, Coffee Shop, a batch of reworked songs and a new track with what Pigg describes as "cinematic vibes." After touring behind LP for two years and finding new meaning in its songs, Pigg decided to jump back into the studio to strip some of his favorite tunes to their core, focusing on lyrics and melody.
The intimate EP will help fans get a better look into the mind of Pigg and his whimsical ways. Take, for instance, his record collection, which is entirely dependent on the requirements of his Honda (it only plays cassettes). "I kind of depend on chance a little bit. A lot of my music has been thrift store finds, whether it's the Sleepless in Seattle soundtrack or the Smiths," he says, thumbing through a pile of tapes. "I'm a big fan of chance, going where the wind blows me and finding myself. The situations that I can't predict are more fun than the ones I could predict."
04/25 - Los Angeles, CA - Hotel Cafe
04/29 - Austin, TX - The Stubbs (small room)
05/01 - West Palm Beach, FL - Sunfest
05/05 - Chicago, IL - Schubas
05/06 - New York, NY - The Living Room
05/08 - Alexandria, VA - The Birchmere
05/09 - Philadelphia, PA - Tin Angel
06/11 - Boston, MA - Club Passim
Ask Landon Pigg about his formative years and he’ll be the first to tell you he escaped from the clutches of normalcy. He tends to get a nosebleed more often than most, but he likes it when life happens naturally, and for him, it has seemed to flow that way from his very first day – August 6th, 1983. Born in Nashville, TN, he moved to Chicago as a child and it was there he learned to appreciate that flow; to read and write and ride a bike, and eventually, to have that bike stolen by a gang of ruffians from the city along with other typical childhood setbacks and milestones.
Soon, back to Nashville it was, where Landon applied himself to more benign interests such as Algebra and Chemistry and – lucky for everyone who has heard his debut RCA album, LP – Music - learning to make his own sounds as he began to rifle through the wonders of his dad’s record collection.
It was Landon’s father, a studio veteran himself, who encouraged Landon’s musical curiosity, as Landon recalls ‘Ray Stevens being the first CD I ever owned.’ Pretty soon Landon was unearthing his own musical breadcrumb trail – David Mead and Rufus Wainwright who showed him the beauty of a melody; Bands like Radiohead helping to etch a deeper emotion into his songwriting; Masterworks from groups such as Led Zeppelin and the Beatles imbuing in him both the love of a creative turn of phrase and a knack for writing indelible hooks. And there’s no denying the upper register of Harry Nilsson floating around somewhere amid Landon’s creations, completing a patchwork topography of the singer/songwriter’s musical exoskeleton that pop writer Nick Hornby would be proud of.
Landon also credits his mother for nurturing his poetic side. For the record, she still sends him words of wisdom meant to buoy one’s strength on those days where the setbacks seem to outnumber the milestones. ‘And’ – laughs Landon, ‘she still cuts my hair.’
With all these threads in hand, Landon Pigg has fastened together his own mercurial outlook on life which he effortlessly and magically captures on his debut album. Yet, he’ll also be the first to tell you it does no good to equate all these disparate strands with ‘figuring him out.’ Those who try to solve him like a puzzle end up confused. He likes to keep his thoughts to himself. Likes to keep even ‘himself’ guessing. Fortunately, a faithful listen to his new CD reveals he’s really not that different from any of us. The songs, which Landon says are ‘about things like losing love and finding hope – about how life will start to make sense and then stop again,’- reflect an uncanny ability to cobble his own confusion into unforgettable music.
Guided by a host of maverick producers, Dan Brodbeck (Dolores O’ Riordan), Paul Ebersold (3 Doors Down), and Clif Magness (Avril Lavigne, The Calling), he fuses his own raw edges into subtle and rollicking pop gems, like the plaintive ‘Sailed On,’ or the sparse but scrappy ‘Last Stop,’ which brandishes ripe examples of what can only be described as musical Pigg-speak – ‘I pick up all the pieces of the chords I didn’t use...’.
The hint we’ve been waiting for about solving at least part of the musical puzzle?
‘Maybe there is a naiveté in my approach,’ he says. ‘I never had a guitar lesson when I started out. I’ve always felt that when you don’t learn all the rules you’re much more inclined to break them with a smile.’ Which dovetails nicely into another inclination of his: You might not always get to hear Landon speak his mind – but you’ll always hear him sing it.
"Coffee Shop" by Landon Pigg - release date: 05/3/08..