2015

by Down West

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    This is our first release ever, a four-song EP from when we were a duo. Shrink-wrapped, opens to a bi-fold with photography by Carla Richmond Coffey.

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  • Full Digital Discography

    Get all 25 Down West releases available on Bandcamp and save 50%.

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality downloads of Wasting Time On You (remix21), Here Comes Winter (Victory Mix), The Land Of California, Desert World, The Ghost Of Present Time, A Billion Strong, Los Perros del Sol, 2015 Remastered, and 17 more. , and , .

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1.
2015 03:52
Feel like walking, don’t you wanna come too Strong wind blowin’, here’s a jacket for you. Feel like walking, don’t you wanna come too Been feelin’ like walking for a year or two Been feelin’ like walking for a year or two Feel like walking to the grocery store What we can carry and we won’t buy more Feel like walking to the grocery store I got a little money so we don’t look poor I got a little money so we don’t look poor Used to have gas and an automobile Now there’s nothing but rusted steel Used to have gas and an automobile Those long ago days just don’t seem real Those long ago days just don’t seem real
2.
Dark before you know it A daylight savings crime I’m waking up in twilight And dizzy all the time Lonely in the night time Before the sun comes up Be back before you know it With an overflowing cup I’m living in surprising days but things look just the same A missing piece completely changed the game Another plan done Another band gone Another man in another circumstance Another day dawned Another night long Another time for another second chance Never really knowing The way it’s s’posed to be The big misunderstanding Is what’s come over me You’re coasting down the highway And stuck in standby mode The headlights catch me standing in the road
3.
Illinois 04:08
There’s a town on a river in Illinois Where the riverboat never sets sail And the people who gathered along the shores They seemed heavy and pale I can barely remember the way we lived Those workdays and nights at the bars Here’s to the loneliness Here’s to the loneliness There’s a place ’cross the river in Illinois You can go there and never be found And the people living beyond the shores They keep looking ’round town I can barely remember the way we lived Those workdays and nights at the bars Here’s to the loneliness Here’s to the loneliness Here’s to the loneliness I can barely remember the way we lived Those workdays and nights at the bars Here’s to the loneliness Here’s to the loneliness Here’s to the loneliness Out to the sunny west
4.
Traveling on the water’s edge Miles to go before I head In one direction Much prefer I didn’t have to choose Shifting down to lower gears It’s been hours, seems like years Forgot to mention We don’t have to go if you refuse Arroyo Grande Hold on when the bridge begins to sway The other side’s not far away Arroyo Grande I can hear the ripples fade a way I’ll follow you if that’s OK The other side’s not far away Spend the night beside the school Up in time for breakfast food There’s no hurry We’ll be there before we need to be Leave before we say goodbye But I think I caught their eye Listen, surely They don’t think that we intend to flee [chorus] Memories of prairies Help us climb another hill Do they think of us, I hope they will I hope they will [chorus] Arroyo Grande, Arroyo Grande, yeah

about

Steve Stanard and Theo Waddell were Northeast L.A. neighbors first, friends second, and Down West third.

They developed their stripped down acoustic sound playing Los Angeles street festivals, and later local bars. Theo Waddell's cajon-plus percussion setup was the perfect match for Steve Stanard's hard-played guitar-driven songs, punctuated with harmonica melodies. The locals approved.

Now, with their debut EP, Down West is putting to rest the idea that acoustic music is somehow synonymous with "mellow."

"We definitely have our ballad-y side," says Steve (check out Illinois), "but we both have rock band backgrounds. Even with just the two of us, our live shows can get pretty raucous. Theo's a big John Bonham fan, and I can always hear a little Zep in his cajon playing."

The title track is a good example of a catchy folk song backed by Waddell's driving acoustic percussion. A wailing harp floats over an infectious percussion groove, which later surprises with rock-style "drum" breaks. Lyrically, the song is deceptively simple. "I actually wrote the song 2015 a few years back," says Steve. "Back then it was a song about a possibly dystopian near future. But now I feel like it's more about how we could lose everything at any time, but still be ok if we have someone."

Another Second Chance follows, a Bo Diddley-esque rhythm defining a rock song about starting over yet again. Country ballad Illinois is almost too sad, until the almost-cumbia opening riff of Arroyo Grande sends you on a central California road trip.

Steve's vocals have been compared to Neil Young, and his harmonica playing style only adds to the comparison. But his songwriting has a more pop-hook sensibility, even as the unplugged vibe keeps everything grounded and raw.

The EP was recorded at Atwater's own Prime Rib Studios, by engineer/proprietor Phil Rohr, who also played bass on the tracks. Michael Marquez added piano on Illinois, and Theo and Steve tracked the rest.

Videos are in the works, as are more recordings of their large catalog of original material. "We're finding different studios and production partners around our neck of town, and recording one song here, two songs there," says Theo. "So our album follow-up should be interesting and fun to do."

credits

released May 15, 2015

Steve Stanard: Vocals, guitar, harmonica
Theo Waddell: Cajon, percussion, mandolin
All songs written by Steve Stanard ©2015
Recorded and Engineered by Phil Rohr at Prime Rib Productions, Los Angeles, CA
Bass on all tracks by Phil Rohr
Organ on Another second chance by Steve Stanard
Piano on Illinois by Michael Marquez
Photography by Carla Richmond Coffing
Thanks to Cathy and Edith, and all the friends and neighbors who help make Down West possible.
©2015 Dos Perros Music
ASCAP

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Down West Los Angeles, California

DOWN WEST is a psychedelic folk rock trio. Featuring songwriter Steve Stanard on guitar and harmonica, Theo Waddell on cajon, drums, and percussion, and Michael Marquez on bass, it’s the kind of indie music that could only be grown in Southern California.

Down West will release their first ever full-length album in September 2020.
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