these fountains rare
A concept album about a woman's quest for the fountain of youth.
Written and Performed by Laylage Courie
A woman enters a Saratoga spa in the off-season to find a poetic, decrepit 19th century sanitorium with strange rituals and rules. In the steamroom an 17th century explorer tells her of peculiar healing springs that are deep enough for her to bathe in. Feverish, she immerses herself in a mineral bath where she is sucked down a drain onto the surface of Moon's Lake. Deer nymphs lure her to the lake house where Moon presides over game dinners. Her future uncertain, she flees for the crossroads where velvet-coated dogs lead her off the well-trodden paths into a long black night. She becomes wild and finds the peculiar springs. With fanfare, and the moon's final blessing, she dives in.
Both radio-play and concept album, these fountains rare here is a highly original genre-bending blend of songs constructed around the voice. Drawing inspiration from a wide-range of music including Quadrophenia, church hyms, Robert Johnson, Meredith Monk, and generic electronic pop, the album is unified by voice: my singing, speaking, and writing voice.
Born and raised in rural Georgia, I moved to New York in my late 20's to study and make experimental theater. I have been a writer and performer on the downtown NYC theater scene for over a decade. Although I have worked with musicians: most notably with Athens, GA's post-rock/jazz band Kenosha Kid and vibraphonist, Matt Moran, this is the first music I have made. I work in the Roy Hart voice tradition: a tradition that began in post-World War I Europe by exploring "the voice as the muscle of the soul:" an un-gendered instrument with the capacity to express a wide range of emotions and sound beyond those we are conditioned to by cultural norms.
After years of taking my voice apart, this record is the final product in my own process to put it back together again: here I find my way to sing.
19th Century Travel Advice: Philip Courie
Spa Attendant and Receptionist: Martha Courie
Doctor Quack: Troy Hill
Sir William Johnson, the explorer: Jack Cox
Laughing chatting ladyies: Alexandra Augustine, Deanna Kennett, Joy Sanzone, Marian Courie
Recorded at cosmic dream radio, Pond Eddy, NY
Mixed and Mastered by: Eric Gorman, Vacation Land Studios
Collage: Laylage Courie
Design: Marian Courie
The text includes excerpts from Saratoga and How to See It, published 1865, and Reverend Reuben Hyde Sears' 1819 poem about the springs which is engraved in stone panels decorating the arches of Saratoga's historic Roosevelt Baths.
Thanks to the NACL Courage Chorus, LotH, Mark Augustine, Jill Samuels, Ramsey Scott, John Jahnke, Hillary Spector, and especially to Marian Courie, for feedback on an early draft.
This record features my family. Love to all of them.
these fountains rare, (c) 2016 luminouswork.org