Travis Lloyd solo EP

A ‘Ghost Flower’ blooms in spring

By Dagney C. Ernest | May 23, 2018
Photo by: Georges Nashan Travis Lloyd

Jackson — When guys — and gals — in bands start to settle down, sometimes the music has to step aside … or take a step in a different direction. Jackson’s Travis Lloyd has released a six-song EP that reflects such a transition, although fans of his band’s “smoky backwoods voodoo rock” needn’t worry.

“The Rugged is going strong and will be playing more this summer,” he said. “We've slowed down since Tim and Cody had babies.”

Tim Valliere and Cody Tibbetts are among the mostly acoustic local super group Lloyd put together for his solo “Ghost Flower” EP. Others on the recording include Tom and Annadeene Fowler, John Pranio, Bernie Nye and Travis’ father, Russ Lloyd — musicians pulled from Leaky Boot Jug Band, The Coloradas, Long Gone Daddys and, of course, The Rugged. It’s quite the ensemble. Travis Lloyd called it a “hot supper of a band.”

Four of the EP’s tracks are Lloyd originals, telling tales of fried chicken, strong women, grandparents dancing and more. The two covers are “How Can I Keep From Singing?,” a 150-year-old hymn; and “Spancil Hill,” a traditional Irish folk ballad of similar vintage.

“I needed a softer, quieter outlet for a little bit,” said Lloyd, although there is plenty of driving rhythm and spirited storytelling in the mix. “I just really enjoy writing and recording.”

Not to worry. The Rugged, which played earlier this month at Ellsworth’s Fogtown Brewing, will be performing this summer. The band’s most recent album, 2016’s “Pull the Plow,” can be enjoyed via theruggedmusic.com. And Lloyd and his father will be playing live and chatting with Jim Bahoosh Saturday, June 2, at 9 a.m. on WERU.

The new EP was recorded in Belfast by Lincoln Clapp, who, Lloyd said, “has great ears” and has worked with major label people from James Taylor to Aretha Franklin. That’s a lot of cred, but there’s an even bigger draw to recording with Clapp, according to Lloyd: it’s “casual, right in the living room, the way I like it!”

“Ghost Flower” is available in hard copy at the Marsh River Cooperative in Brooks; and digitally via Amazon, CDbaby and iTunes.

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Dagney C. Ernest
A&E editor for Courier Publications, LLC
(207) 594-4401/4407, ext. 115
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Dagney has been providing Courier coverage of the local arts scene since 1985 and has helmed the multi-paper A&E section since it debuted in 2003. She has been a local performing artist, community and professional for more than 30 years; and spent a decade writing, producing and announcing on-air for several Midcoast radio stations. When not in the NewsNest, Dagney likes to be in motion.

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