Cloudsplitter

Cloudsplitter

BandRockPop

Cloudsplitter is an energetic jam band without the endless guitar solo. Or, it's an alt-country band that's as likely to do some high-velocity punky stuff as three-part harmony weepers or a prog-rock epic. The melodies, sound & vocals keep folks who haven't heard us before glued to their barstools.

Biography

The name "Cloudsplitter" refers to a mountain in upstate New York. It's where two of us come from. But considering the mountains and the rain out here, it fits, for all of us. Reminds me, actually of a show we played not too long ago.

Seems like some of our favorite places to play aren't around anymore. Like the Trout Lake Country Inn. It's at the end of this dusty little road, and just looks like an old farmhouse. Probably used to be, and from what the looks bands get from the neighbors, some would’ve rather it had stayed that way. Maybe that's why it's not having shows anymore, I don't know.

So judging by the historic marker by the door, and the creaky old floors, it's been around a while. The folks who ran it were great. The main bartender, Jimmy, actually used to play around the NW in the '90s in a band you would've heard of, if you'd been here then. I'd mention them, but I got the feeling he headed to Trout Lake to keep a low profile. He had a buddy with him, who played piano. They'd both hop on stage to play with the band, if you let them, and we always would. Jimmy could scream on guitar and his buddy - since the piano was way too far from the stage to play on - would bust out the accordion. Anything with four chords or less was fair game. One time we played there, Jimmy was leading us through old Little Feat tunes. I remember busting out Dylan I thought I’d forgotten. For hours, locals and friends of Jimmy's came and went, while we played. I remember getting tired, and then getting refueled by faking some old Motown thing or a Blues Traveler song that the accordion guy knew.

Eventually, the crowd started dwindling, and the guitar strings were getting so nappy they stuck to our fingers. I don't remember how it ended, other than I think Jimmy didn't come back from the men's room.

You crash there, in a heap. The rhythm section, Yates and Skully, wound up sleeping next to the stage. Next morning, they woke up to a frenzy of flies, courtesy of the half-empty beers that Jimmy probably figured the band was going to finish off.

Chances are, if you played there and stayed over like we did, you woke up before Jimmy, or anyone, showed up to open. They were all at the show the night before, it seemed like. I guess if you wanted a wake-up beer to kill your hangover, you could've helped yourself, and maybe left a couple bucks. I don't remember doing that myself. What I do remember is seeing Mount Adams through the upstairs window. And once I staggered downstairs, there it was again, reflected in the lake down the road. The view was pretty good consolation for the fact that we weren't going to get a cup of coffee without starting the haul back to Portland. I guess we could’ve stuck around a while, and seen when folks started showing up again.

For us, playing Trout Lake was one of those road-trip odysseys, where you know that something exciting is at the other end - but a big part of it is up to how you deal with some guys wanting to get on stage, or the kitchen being a grill on the front porch, or the sleeping arrangements amounting to a couch next to the stage. For us, it was alright. Seemed OK, for the proprietors, too.

Trout Lake was one of those shows that would wring a lot out of us, but it was a beautiful, if hazy, exhaustion. Wouldn’t change a thing. OK, one thing: it would’ve been great to see the morning shift, because if we're going to play four hours of music - we're at least going to want to say "thanks" to someone.

Here’s hoping for a next time: We'll be there to toast the view, with a cup of joe.

Rob, Cloudsplitter, June 2007.

Discography

Best place to find our music is at our web site, myspace.com/cloudsplittermusic.

Four songs in frequent rotation.

Set List

Our sets range from 40 minutes to three hours, or longer. It all depends on what a place wants. Typically, we'll play 2/3 to 3/4 original material, and the rest would be covers (typically, Rolling Stones, Bottle Rockets, Bob Dylan, Steve Earle, MC5, Pink Floyd, Warren Zevon, Uncle Tupelo, Wilco...).

We often play the three songs here (Holiday, Cross-country, and Dorothy), as well as the four on our web site (Some Times, Mile High, Rats, Puddles). We're currently working on a new CD that'll include Puddles and Rats, and a dozen or so more songs, that as they're finalized, will enter the rotation at myspace.com/cloudsplittermusic.