Tomás Doncker – Wherever You Go
Label: True Groove Records
‘Wherever You Go’, the new album from singer/guitarist/producer Tomás Doncker, was born from hope in a time of crisis. Due out October 24th on True Groove Records, it was recorded entirely in quarantine across the US and Europe by Doncker and the Blue Ruin Band, with all musicians collaborating live across eight time zones (and also adding in parts individually).
The record’s eight tracks are built on Doncker’s deep blues roots and run the gamut from a traditional Chicago style to Gospel-inflected
Hill Country to futuristic and psychedelic. “Necessity and, quite honestly, fear were my prime motivators,” Doncker explains.
“The UK-Italy tour we were all set for had been cancelled because the pandemic was exploding. We had all been so looking forward to it and it just evaporated overnight. I was stuck here in Brooklyn,and in order to maintain interest and energy amongst the bandmembers who were almost all in the EU, I suggested we record something. Almost instantaneously the song ‘Wherever You Go’ came together. I thought all I can do is send out a prayer of my own design. It was literally the thought of ‘what would my last words be?’ It just came to me.
It was just one song but it was incredibly heartfelt and deeply emotional. So the feeling and the excitement the song and video for it created within the True Groove family was like an instant creative spark.
From there it was almost subconscious. I almost immediately gravitated to Blind Willie Johnson and Skip James to continue that prayerful and mindful approach and we recorded two more songs, ‘City Of Refuge’ and ‘Hard Time Killing Floor Blues.’ It was actually fairly easy to do because those are songs we all know and love. They came out well and by that point it was clear everyone was very invigorated by the process and wanted to keep going. I know it might sound strange but it kept it almost wholesome; it gave us something that made us feel like we were expressing our true selves. Music is always the healing force in the world and we knew that if we stayed close to that we’d manage to be all right in this new normal.” Wherever You Go is a rejuvenating and almost cathartic record, but, above all, it’s still the Blues.
01. I’m Gonna Run To The City Of Refuge (Blind Willie Johnson)
02. Wherever Yo Go (Tomás Doncker)
3. Have Mercy Baby Please (Komunyakaa/Doncker)
4. Hard Time Killing Floor Blues (Skip James)
5. Change (Matthiack/Doncker)
6. Come Sunday (Komunyakaa/Doncker)
7. Drown In Blue (Mase/Doncker)
8. Door To The Dome (Komunyakaa/Dellatacoma/Doncker)