“When I think of Ireland I think of a ‘home’” said Portland musician Freddy Trujillo, bass player with The Delines and Richmond Fontaine. He was in Ireland as recently as October with alt-country-rock legends Richmond Fontaine. They were playing shows on the island as part of their European farewell tour before disbanding after 22 years on the road.
This Irish video premiere for his latest single ‘Little Birds’ shows another side to Trujillo’s artistry though. As a singer songwriter and musician in his own right he recently released ‘Little Birds’ as the second single from his Amexica album.
Amexica spends a lot of time looking at his Native American and Chicano heritage. It’s a Chicano rock and roll album, dealing with serious themes and employing guitar, drums and Trujillo’s own bass to drive the rhythm, and get the point across. ‘Little Birds’ was written for his children and the video passes through a day as they take part in Pow Wow in traditional clothes. The song alters the album’s direction, lightens it in sound and spirit, and lends itself to a video that puts on record Trujillo’s heritage, and his people.
An interesting slant on the video is that it was filmed at a time when Trujillo was feeling despondent and discouraged from continuing with his solo career. He had reached the stage of asking himself whether it was worth it at all. Look closely and you’ll spot hidden clues to this among the proud traditions. Brooding snippets of bar scenes, a sullen on-stage presence that belies a man who confesses to seeing music as his “antidepressant.”
Trujillo will be returning to Ireland in a year or so with The Delines. They will bring with them their new album, and a healed Amy Boone, their lead singer who was involved in a car accident in spring ’16 and is still recuperating. He has told me on several occasions that he considers the Irish “my peeps” so it’s a tour he’s looking forward to.
“[On] the first tour I ever did with The Delines – Ireland was our first stop” he recalled. “I believe we went to six cities in that week. From the promoters, audience, hotels, friends making flap jacks, or bed and breakfasts there was such friendliness. Even the cab drivers were full of life and hilarious. I literally felt like I was invited into someone’s home.”
“Even when I could hear people having a good time outside when I was supposed to sleep, it was like being a kid and hearing my parents with friends in the other room. Comfortable! This time I was full of Guinness and stew instead of Jamaica and Pozole. Thank you for being so supportive of my pals from Richmond Fontaine. I felt so lucky this last year to see that band out in such a good way. It was like being on a Willy Vlautin Scholarship. Hope to see you all soon with the Delines. You know who you are. And like I hear a lot of you say, “Class”.”
P.S. “Jamaica” is a drink made from Hibiscus and Pozole is a stew.