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Howard Fishman Finishes Trilogy on a Personal Note

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Howard Fishman debuted not one but three new albums last week at Abrons Arts Center with a performance of each different album on three consecutive nights.  We attended the last performance, in which he presented “The World Will Be Different,” his most personal album of the trilogy, which focuses on “love won and lost” (through a personal relationship that ended recently).

Fishman was joined by some fantastic musicians on the big, stripped down stage in the historic Henry Street Playhouse.  It’s a great venue for such a dynamic event, but this particular performance was quite personal and I found myself wishing  for a more intimate setting.

The albums were recorded at the same time but cover three different time periods (and geographical locations) in his life – the first, “Better Get Right,” comes with the big brass sounds of New Orleans, where Fishman got his start as a musician.  The second, “No Further Instructions,” is a song cycle about travel through rural Romania.  He writes in depth about the whole process on his blog, “Everybody Was Friendly,” here.

It’s too bad Fishman seems to feel a need for a lot of explanation in releasing all three albums at once – apparently the idea was not well-received by people in ‘the industry,’ but I’m not sure it matters – he’s gotten plenty of attention lately (via The New Yorker, WNYC’s Soundcheck and a video by Marie Le Claire, documenting the entire process ).  Clearly, Howard Fishman has been on quite an odyssey over the last eighteen months, and I think the music speaks for itself.

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