Singletrack

CAR Music's Singletrack

Singletrack is CAR's Artist Story for Chicago performers in which songwriters, actors, playwrights, bands and more discuss a song and how it came to be alongside audio or video clips of the work. To submit your song for consideration, please email the music researcher.

Singletrack: Benjamim e Edinho

“Swim Swim”

Cornetist, composer, and multi-instrumentalist Ben LaMar Gay has been making waves in various circles of the Chicago creat

Singletrack: HOMME

"Woman"

Homme is Macie Stewart (of Marrow) and Sima Cunningham, and they have what they call a “harmonic connection.”

Singletrack: Elle Casazza

“Soft & Low”

When Elle Casazza takes the stage, she takes the room, as well—a fact that any Chicagoan who has seen the “fearless, sultry and powerful” artist perform live will likely attest to.

Akenya Seymour

Singletrack: Akenya

"Disappear"

You may have heard Akenya Seymour on Chance the Rapper’s #10Day or at one of her jazz showcases around the city. A graduate of the Chicago Academy of the Arts who went on to study jazz voice at Boston’s New England Conservatory, 23-year-old multi-genre artist Akenya Seymour is a force to be reckoned with.

Pugz Atomz

Singletrack: Pugs Atomz

"Rocks and Blows" from Bama Pi

If you are familiar with my music, you know I’m about styles, patterns and double entendres.

Joel Styzens. Photo: Paul Elledge

Singletrack: Instrumentalist Joel Styzens

Soundtracking "Bicycle Notes," an animated digital short

Animator Fernanda Torres of Bogota, Colombia, approached me about composing a soundtrack for her digital short after hearing my instrumental album. We collaborated back and forth via the Internet for about one year.

Nadia Oussenko

Singletrack: Choreographer Nadia Oussenko

On directing the dance-film "Nothing to See/Hear"

Nothing to See/Hear is a love story about two women and their unraveling relationship. As the estranged couple poses in a portrait studio, each reflects on their former intimacy. The story is set to the bittersweet track A True Story of a Story of True Love by The Books.

Raphaelle Ziemba

Singletrack: Choreographer Raphaelle Ziemba

On the participatory series, "Dance: A Moving Canvas"

"Dance: A Moving Canvas" is program that seeks to expand dance audiences in Chicago by enabling participants to deepen their understanding of the choreographic process. Three choreographers were chosen by jury to develop work for the program.

Jacob Kart

Singletrack: Jacob Kart

"Tina's House on the Hill" from the album Life of Crime

It's pretty much a true story, based on a weird experience I had on a trip I took to Mexico....There's an old woman there who's a sort of hallucinogenic shaman. Traveling kids from all over the world congregate at her house. It's a pretty wild scene. It seemed like I should write a song about it.

Erica Mott

Singletrack: Erica Mott

Rehearsal footage from the interdisciplinary "3 Singers Opera"

The interdisciplinary performance "3 Singers Opera" explores the female body’s relationship with machinery, particularly with the labor, production and policies of the textile industry.

David Taylor

Singletrack: David Taylor

"Coffee's So Good" single

I wanted to create something dance-able. This hook tends to lend itself to that. Besides, it’s simply more fun setting something to a four-on-the-floor beat.

Jennifer Stucki, Oboist

Singletrack: Jennifer Stucki, Oboist

Sonatine for Oboe and Piano by Maurice Ravel

This piece explores the higher range of the oboe, which is a difficult range to play in tune while maintaining a full and dark sound. When played well, the sound that emanates is a beautiful, alluring impression unique to the oboe.

Exit Ghost

Singletrack: Michael Golas of Exit Ghost

"Speaker" from the album Elston (residency at High Concept Laboratories)

There are an infinite number of ways to create a song. It can begin with a founding motif. You can impose a rhythmic device that structures the sounds around it. Starting with a lyric can generate a vocabulary of imagery for the music to follow. A simple riff can morph into an entire phrase.

Angela James

Singletrack: Angela James

"Wanna Be Lyin With You"

One of the greatest things about country music (and soul music) is that part of the songwriting goal is to tell an emotionally relatable story about love or relationships. That’s one of the reasons I’m attracted to the genre as a singer and songwriter; I want to write about life in a direct and poetic way.

David Kornfeld, Producing Artistic Director of Underscore Theatre

Singletrack: David Kornfeld of Underscore Theatre

"The Best Part of My Day" from the musical Pr0ne

Pr0ne follows Jessica Harrison, an aspiring film actress, and her family as the country discovers her secret: that she is the unnamed, possibly exploited, young woman in an adult “casting couch” video at the heart of a highly-publicized legal battle.

Heisenberg Uncertainty Players. Photo by Andrew Spear.

Singletrack: John Dorhauer of Heisenberg Uncertainty Players

"Death & Taxes" from the album Emergency Postcards

“Death & Taxes” was originally written for Black Umbrella Brigade. Our singer wanted a danceable, instrumental song, so I brought in this idea for an angular funk jam. It was too hip for the room, though, and we never performed it.

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