Edie Brickell releases records full of joy

Associated Press Modified: January 28, 2011 at 8:08 am •  Published: January 28, 2011

Edie Brickell purposefully searched for joy amid sorrow in a pair of new releases, both coming out, unusually, in the same month.

The 44-year-old started both nearly a decade ago, but put the eponymous "Edie Brickell" on hold following the death of New Bohemians keyboardist and friend Carter Albrecht in 2007.

Over the same time, she worked with Steve Gadd and others on a separate project resulting in "The Gaddabouts."

Brickell (who is also the wife of Paul Simon) spoke to The Associated Press about how she made a conscious decision to be happy, why she took "Edie Brickell" off the shelf and whether she'll ever work again with New Bohemians, the band that scored a top 10 hit with "What I Am" in 1988.

AP: You're releasing two CDs in January, the eponymous "Edie Brickell" and "The Gaddabouts." Both have been in the works for a decade. What took so long?

Brickell: I took my time because living the family life, that's such a huge job. So whenever a band would come into town, like the Gaddabouts, I would do that and in the meantime, write a lot of songs and just pick and choose from whatever batch felt right.

AP: How are the two projects similar and how are they different?

Brickell: I think that the solo record has a straight-ahead pop sensibility and I just wanted it to be a good time, a feel good time to have in the background. I recognized after "Volcano" that when I'm singing around the house, or listen to other music, I don't listen to the sad music I make. I listen to happy music. I thought, man, I should be doing that. There was a real intention behind that record to make it feel good and move beyond melancholy a little bit.

AP: You dedicated "Edie Brickell" to Albrecht, who plays keyboards and sings on some of the tracks but was killed in 2007. How did he influence the record?

Brickell: He understood me and my personality and where I was going. You never had to tell Carter what to play. ... You play a song for him and he got it immediately and took it up three notches. He took your idea and made it better.

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