Wicked Cool is proud to announce the release of a two-track digital-only single from Brian Ray today. The A-side is “Here For You” and the B-Side is a cover of Neil Young’s classic “Cinnamon Girl”, with a touch of “Mr. Soul” thrown in. Guitar World premiered the Young cover this week and both tracks are available now.
The B-side to the digital single has an interesting relation to Ray as Young actually wrote "Cinnamon Girl" about Brian’s sister Jean, who was dating Neil at the time.
“I was going to a boarding school in the 7th grade in Ojai, California and I remember hearing 'Cinnamon Girl 'for the very first time and I was just knocked out by it," declares Ray. "It was gritty and tough but it had grace and beauty in the melody and the lyric along with an almost haunting relentless energy to it. Imagine my surprise when later on I learned that the song was written by Neil Young for my sister, Jean Ray. Apparently, unbeknownst to me at the time, they were seeing each other, even though each of them were involved with other people.
"That song and the story behind its inspiration have always made me curious about playing it and while I was recording the basic track for ‘Cinnamon Girl’ with just me and a great drummer named Matt Laug, I came to the end of the song where Neil goes into his sort of solo ad lib guitar tantrum on his single version, I just started playing a revved up, crazy version of his great Buffalo Springfield song, ‘Mr. Soul’ in that moment as sort of a laugh. Matt joined in immediately and I decided it sounded cool and I left it in.”
A-side “Here For You” is a hopeful message written for Ray’s young nephews. Ray confides, “This world has gotten a little bit crazy, dark and unpredictable lately and in the midst of all of that I wanted to send a message of hope and positivity to two young boys starting out on this magnificent voyage we call life.”