True to the spirit of the day, Greg Loiacono, co-founding member of The Mother Hips, has released his latest single, "Last Day Of June" (listen/share). An instrumental guitar-based piece in the lineage of artists like John Fahey, John Renbourn and Robbie Basho, the recording completes a series of four solo singles issued by Loiacono and The Mother Hips’ longtime record label, Blue Rose. Loiacono performs the song on acoustic guitar on top of a subtle synthesizer bed, while Scott Hirsch of Hiss Golden Messenger adds ebow guitar.
"The song is a result of reflecting on impermanence and how no matter what kind of plans you make, things can and will change whether you want them to or not. The piece was written on June 30th, 2020 which was my wife and I's 20th wedding anniversary. The world was deep in lockdown and many of our life plans had fallen by the wayside. It did not feel like a time to celebrate. Continuity, patience and acceptance seemed to be almost antidotes to the sometimes nerve-frying characteristics of the unknown and are some of the qualities that helped see us through,” explains Loiacono. "The blend of acoustic guitar and synthesizer allowed me to meld juxtaposing thoughts and feeling through tone. It made sense to leave words out of it and let the music guide the way. The result is a dedication to our love and journey, thus far."
"Last Day of June" is accompanied with a video filmed in Olompali State Park in Novato, CA (watch/share). The song also foreshadows a forthcoming instrumental solo album by Loiacono planned for release in 2022.
“When I was sixteen I found a record in my father’s collection that had a trippy cover on it with two dragons and the kind of archaic imagery I was into at the time (and still am today). It had three names on it: John Fahey, Leo Kottke and Peter Lang. When I listened to the masterful guitar playing and read the comical bios of these unique individuals, I instantly became enamored with the whole sound and vibe," Loiacono tells Live For Live Music in a piece surrounding the video's premiere. “This changed my perception of what guitar playing could be. A year later I was at renaissance faire and a hippie sitting under a tree was playing "That’s The Way" by Led Zeppelin. I noticed that he wasn’t playing the usual fingerings I was familiar with. He showed me open G-tuning. Once I learned about that I realized that many of the remarkable sounds and chords I was hearing on the aforementioned compilation album involved open tunings. It was a cool revelation to have my teenage rock world and this American Primitive Guitar music that I had recently discovered, collide and inform me. ‘Last Day of June’ certainly wouldn’t have come about if it wasn’t for my Dad and that Takoma Records compilation.”
Greg Loiacono's previous three releases from the series of four solo singles, include "Seed" (listen/share), "Bound To Fall," (listen/share) (a duet with indie singer/songwriter Jamie Drake) and "What Can I Say?" (listen/share). The songs come on the heels of a full-length solo album, 'Mystic Traces,' released in 2020. Along with continuing to build a body of solo work, Loiacono's primary band, The Mother Hips, are celebrating their 30th anniversary this year. To honor this milestone, the band’s label Blue Rose is reissuing all ten of their studio albums on vinyl. Additionally, The Mother Hips will release a new studio album this Winter.
"The Mother Hips—the band that I have been in since I was twenty years old—are celebrating our 30th year together in 2021. Blue Rose Music has been releasing our entire catalog on vinyl to commemorate the anniversary and The Hips have completed a new album that will come out by the end of the year. I’m also working on an instrumental guitar album for 2022. Lots of music everywhere. Thanks to the support of our fanbase we’re afforded the opportunity to remain creative 30-plus years into our careers. I’m very excited for what the future holds," concludes Loiacono.