Garfield French

Alabama Breeze

by Garfield
in Media

Today we are releasing the first song, Alabama Breeze, from the upcoming album to be released later this summer.

So much time has passed since we last performed together and yet when we reconnected it was with a familiarity that only comes from having shared so much and worked so hard towards a common goal. There is a comfort zone and even with all that has happened in our lives since we last collaborated it is still there.

This next album will be a group of stories about events scattered throughout my life. Events that left imprints. Some stories like Alabama Breeze were conceived many years ago yet only were completed in this past year. I have asked Chip Yarwood and Fred Nicholson to co produce this album with me.

Paul O’Donnell plays acoustic guitar and banjo. Drew French plays drums. Jacques Fillion is on synthesizer. Chip Yarwood plays flute, organ, bass and guitar. Garfield French on vocals, piano, synth, and electric guitar.

I hope you enjoy it. This is the first song from Garfield in 2018.

It was dark by the time the cab reached Florence and the cabby and I were chatting to pass the time as he brought me from the tiny airport to the hotel where I would spend the next few months writing and producing the next album. As we drove and relaxed in the conversation the middle-aged African-American driver pointed to some lights in the distance and said that over that way lived a guy he couldn’t stand and one day he was gonna get his gun and pop the cracker.

This kind of conversation was not unusual for me but the way this man spoke was. I was getting an introduction to a whole new culture as we drove to the Holiday Inn in Florence Alabama.

The strange and almost too casual way gun violence was introduced to our conversation caught me by surprise, and as I was later to write the song Alabama Breeze I think it’s important to mention that this kind of talk was expressed by both black and white men.

The song Alabama Breeze took a long time to write and it changed a hundred times over the years. It was only after president Obama was elected that I wrote the third verse and declared with a chuckle to myself. “Done”

I loved my time in the south and was exposed to southern hospitality that I will always cherish. I also felt the uneasy tensions that seemed too hang in air like the slight change in temperature that occurred when a trooper walked into the little diner with his mirror shades and slowly gazed at the customers before placing his order with the cashier.

Available for purchase now from the link above, or on iTunes, Spotify, and other platforms shortly.

Comments (13)

  • Arnold Dyck

    Saw you at Conestoga College in Kitchener in 1976??? My friends and I couldn’t get enough of your music. Bought all your albums but lost touch. Glad to see you back! Great stuff!? Are you touring?

  • Catherine Ramat

    How exciting! Nice song! can’t wait to hear the whole album. Back after soooo many years.

  • Tony Boyce

    I have all your music too. Genius work. My brother introduced me to you and your band’s music…. now your music. He passed away in 2011. I am sure he would have liked to hear your new music. I will listen to it for him. Thanks.

  • Paul de Vries

    Please tour!

  • George Snoga

    (This is a true story. I sat in my car for a lunch hour listening to this.)

    In Feb 1990, the (in)famous radio station KISS-FM in San Antonio, had been bought up, and was going to have its format changed. For the last hour of the old format, they brought in Joe Anthony and Lou Roney to do a retrospective hour of the old KMAC/KISS and the acts they broke out early in San Antonio. Bands like AC/DC (which they played when the only records of them you could buy were imports). Rush, (when they only had one record out), among others.

    How did they finish the station up? First they had an on-air fight over a live promo tape from a group, which one former DJ had “pinched” from the other who most definitely wanted it back. And then they cue’d up the final old format song from that group.

    A Private Affair, by Garfield. . . .

    • Ken

      love the story…big fan from Montreal here. saw them live twice, once outdoors overlooking the Ottawa River, and the sound was almost too big even for the open air setting. Great light show too

    • Garfield

      Thank you George. You really made my day!

    • Marten

      Beautiful little anecdote. Merci Beaucoup. 🌻

      • Marten

        Garfield, your music is precious Much much thanks. You’re singing here with some real peaks in volume, & the microphone is being over driven and clipping, possibly the recording amps are clipping too. Sounds horribly harsh.
        Put a microphone 3 to 6 ft in front of you, (3 to 4 feet is usually good) & record from that. Keep your close mic, if you’re used to singing into one so you feel right. & don’t use the closei mic the recording. You can still get the raw emotion + power, with much improved sound.
        & Please consider doing away with a commercial mixing board altogether. They have hundreds of little chip amplifiers in them. Every component degrades the sound somewhat. 🙏🎵💚

  • Marty Bickerstaffe

    I saw You in the Summer of 1976, You were the opening band for The Beach Boys at the CNE in Toronto. I loved the song ‘Eyes’ and within days, I bought Your “Strange Streets”!!!

  • Sandy Reddy

    As a musician I can tell you that this is a Fantastic record play on Man.

  • J. Mountjoy

    Uncle Sam’s Lundy’s Lane Niagara Falls, Multiple times. 1976ish

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