My Bahamas feature is in this month's Exclaim and online.
The name conjures up sticky days giving way to long, warm nights, but fans of Afie Jurvanen's solo project, Bahamas, know the Toronto-based singer-songwriter is much more comfortable singing about his life far from paradise. His debut, Pink Strat, tracked the highs and lows of a doomed relationship, and three years later, Jurvanen is back with Barchords.
I'm kind of weary to talk too much about the genesis," Jurvanen laughs. "It was one of those things that just took forever to process. Both of my records chronicle this period of my life... Okay, yeah, it's a breakup album." He laughs again, and admits that since this is the beginning of his press tour, he hasn't got an eloquent response at the ready. But that's part of why people are drawn to in his music: bare bones honesty.
The self-taught guitarist spent years playing in Feist's band and backing friends like Jason Collett. Though Pink Strat offered some subtle deviations into indie folk, blues and rock, Barchords embraces those genres wholeheartedly, with some detours into pop and gospel as well. With the songs recorded over a year ago – Barchords was delayed when U.S. label Brushfire signed Bahamas last year and released Pink Strat domestically – Jurvanen is digging back into songs that were written at a very different time and place.
My domestic situation is much healthier now," he laughs, quickly adding that "the relationships of my past are very precious and important and I don't want to make light of them at all. But, personally, I'm in a much better place. And even musically, I don't know if confident is the right word, but I just feel comfortable. That's a nice feeling right now, to be starting a new record that way."