P.J.M. Bond Releases Indie Folk Album Inspired by Hemingway’s Short-Story Collection, “In Our Time”

Article Contributed by gratefulweb | Published on Monday, October 23, 2023

On October 6, P.J.M. Bond released his debut album: “In Our Time,” inspired by Ernest Hemingway’s eponymous short-story collection published in 1925. Each of these songs transports the listener to the little universes created by Hemingway, while Bond shows off his chops as a multi-instrumentalist. On the album, Bond plays guitar, piano, flute, jew harp, blues harp, and organ. Bond collaborated with Ed Brooks (Fleet Foxes, R.E.M., Pearl Jam) for mastering on “In Our Time.”

For years, P.J.M. Bond had a dream to make a musical album inspired by a literary work. After obtaining an MA in English Literature from the University of Amsterdam and writing his thesis on the work of Ernest Hemingway, he visited the Hemingway Conference in Paris (2018). Here, he was re-introduced by David Wyatt to Hemingway’s debut short-story collection titled In Our Time. Bond says, "I quickly realized that the short story is a perfect vehicle for the song form, and especially Hemingway’s writing, which despite its seemingly simple prose, is characterized by intricately crafted stories."

For “In Our Time,” Bond started with rough ideas, and then wrote an entire album based on Hemingway’s short stories. To help him crystallize the songs and process, he locked himself in a log cabin to record the songs in isolation, with just the literature and music. Bond says, "Accepting Hemingway as my guide was liberating on the one hand, because I did not have to think of a track listing, the moods were already there, and the themes and directions of my lyrics to each song were already contained within the stories. On the other hand, this way of writing proved to be quite restrictive and alienating, because you cannot make a song fit if the story is unaccepting of it."

Acclaimed Hemingway scholar J. Gerald Kennedy wrote the following:

“P.J.M. Bond has deftly captured the plangent music of In Our Time in this act of creative homage. For anyone familiar with Hemingway’s ground-breaking collection, the songs that fill this album will recall both the beauty of its prose and the lurking nostalgia for lost innocence and belief after numbing disillusionment. Sweetly melodic phrasing, quiet lyrics conjuring key story lines, commonplace sounds (falling rain, footsteps on snow, a ratcheting reel), pulsating rhythms, metrical changes, sometimes unnerving dissonance—these are the hallmarks of the brilliant musicality offered here. Bond’s compelling guitar work, lush keyboard creations, and poignant vocals make Hemingway’s pieces come alive in new and surprising ways. He recalls both the radical discontinuity of these stories and the connective emotions, often expressed in irresistible cello refrains that evoke a primal yearning.”

“In Our Time” Track Listing

    On the Quai at Smyrna
    Indian Camp
    The Doctor and the Doctor’s Wife
    The End of Something
    The Three-Day Blow
    The Battler
    A Very Short Story
    Soldier’s Home
    The Revolutionist
    Mr. and Mrs. Elliot
    Cat in the Rain
    Out of Season
    Cross-Country Snow
    My Old Man
    Big Two-Hearted River: Part I
    Big Two-Hearted River: Part II

About P.J.M. Bond
P.J.M. Bond earned his spurs with his band Dandelion, with whom he released several singles and EPs, and two full-length albums: "Everest" (2016) and "Laika, Belka, Strelka" (2019). In addition, Bond is an oft-asked session pianist for many Dutch bands, including VanWyck, Judy Blank, and AlascA. In 2021 Bond received international attention for his debut solo EP titled "Sunset Blues” (via Concerto Records). Americana UK called it "guitar and vocal folk perfection,” and Country blog Holler insisted that "Bond has crafted an understated masterpiece.”

Tour Dates

Oct. 6 - Volendam (NL) - PX Volendam - Release Show
Oct. 7 - Amsterdam (NL) - Concerto Recordstore - Instore
Oct. 28 - Den Helder (NL) - Juicy Records - Instore
Nov. 4 - Graauw (NL) - Ketchup Sessions
Nov. 5 - Haarlem (NL) - De Waag
Nov. 6 - Utrecht (NL) - TivoliVredenburg
Nov. 9 - Amsterdam (NL) Club Kazoo
Nov 20 - Eindhoven (NL) - Americana Mondays
Dec. 3 - Culemborg (NL) - Storytelling
Dec. 10 - Utrecht (NL) - LE:EN

Jan. 7 - Nieuw- en Sint Joosland (NL) - Theater de Wegwijzer
Jan. 14 - Lede (BE) - Herberg Koning Ezel
April 6 - Grootschermer (NL) - Museum en Beeldentuin Nic Jonk
April 13 - Meppel (NL) - Vegafabriek