Cover art by Marcus Wise
Red House Records is pleased to announce the November 9, 2010 release of How the Light Gets In, the new instrumental album by Wise- Magraw.Featuring the virtuosic talents of tabla player Marcus Wise and guitarist Dean Magraw, this is their first duo recording since their 1985 Red House release Wise-Magraw (the fifth album released on the label).
Taken from from Leonard Cohen’s song “Anthem,” the title How the Light Gets In refers to the imperfection of things and that it is through the cracks that we are able to see light and beauty. “We really didn’t do much polishing on this record,” Dean says. “We recorded it in 3 or 4 sessions, and that was about it.” The album is about living in the moment, about the interplay of two artists listening to each other and creating music together.
A transformative experience for both musicians, the recording of this album came not long after Dean Magraw was diagnosed with MDS and had a bone marrow transplant. Marcus Wise, his friend for over 30 years, saw that he was struggling and suggested they get together to play some music. There was so much magic in that get- together that they decided to go into the studio to finish an old recording which they had never released. But when Dean and Marcus started playing, they discovered that the music they were making was in no way related to their previous work--it was something altogether different.
“There was something special that happened in Matthew Zimmerman’s Wild Sound Studio,” Dean says. “Marcus and I have been playing together for years, but during this project, we listened to each other in a way that was really new. We spent more time in silence--hearing the notes, feeling them. It was an amazing environment to make music in.”
Although Dean was still recovering from his bone marrow transplant, he left the studio with renewed energy. The spirit that permeated these recording sessions affected both musicians.
“Recording with Dean when he was being physically, mentally and spiritually challenged...watching him pour all his soul into that crystallized moment was one of my great crossroads,” Marcus says. “Both our musical ideas kept evolving until we happily realized a whole new CD.”
Full of transcendent moments, How the Light Gets In, is brimming with positive energy. Whether in quiet tracks like “Jade” or in driving numbers like “Entrainment,” the music is sometimes meditative, sometimes lively but always soulful and original.