Eleven Years and 28 Days in the Yellow Room

by Jonathan Rundman

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    Jonathan's lo-fi 1992 cassette debut, reissued on CD in 2004 with bonus tracks.

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REINTERPRETATIONS 2003

1. Read The Signs
2. My Helen
3. This July

PRE-HISTORY

4. 1987 – Keep The Faith (2003 version)
5. 1988 – Spur Of The Moment (original multi-track demo)
6. 1989 – We’ve Come So Far (2003 version)
7. 1989 – My Helen (original live recording)
8. 1990 – We Shall Not Give Up The Fight (live in concert)
9. 1991 – Bob’s Tires (original live recording)
10. 1991 – Another Bad Day (original 4-track demo)
11. 1991 – A Pile Of Blue Crumbs (original live recording)
12. 1991 – Checking Volume (original live recording)
13. 1991 – When You’re Away (4-track demo)
14. 1992 – Mt. Vernon (original 28 Days outtake)

1992 ORIGINAL ALBUM

15. Read The Signs
16. Another Bad Day
17. Faith Like Iron
18. The “Con” Prefix Song
19. This July
20. Cassette Flip
21. My Helen
22. I See A Bison
23. That’s What I Will Be
24. When I Get Bored
25. Bob’s Tires

credits

released December 29, 1992

(text from the album's liner notes)

I recorded my debut solo album 28 Days in the Yellow Room in the extra bedroom (yellow curtains and carpeting, as you can imagine) of our first apartment. Dawn and I were newlyweds and we had just moved to Eugene, Oregon, where Dawn would attend graduate school. The apartment was #6 on the second floor of the Polk Plaza building on the corner of 18th Avenue and Polk Street in Southwest Eugene. I began working on the album (which I was initially going to title All In Red, after a recurring lyric from “Read The Signs” and “Faith Like Iron”) in October of 1992. Recording for a few hours at a time sporadically throughout the weeks, I finished the ten songs by November. I sent the final audio mixes to Richard Colligan of This Here Music (then based in Iowa) who was kind enough to help me release the album on his own upstart label. By the time the artwork was approved and the project was back from the manufacturer it was already December. The first box of tapes was delivered to me at the Radisson South Hotel in the Twin Cities where I was playing music during Christmas vacation.

Those events occurred exactly eleven years ago, and now I find myself many albums, many addresses, and many experiences beyond the Yellow Room. It’s the Fall of 2003, and I suspect that my pending Fatherhood (the baby is due in January 2004) is causing me to reflect on my past and preserve the music of my youth and young adulthood. 28 Days in the Yellow Room was never released on CD, and the cassette tapes sold out years ago, so these songs and this period of my career have been unavailable to many people. I’m surprised how often I’m asked if that album can be purchased on CD. I have always answered that question with a “no” – until now!

In order to document the most obscure output of my musical life, I’m thrilled to reissue 28 Days in the Yellow Room on CD for the first time, complete with bonus tracks. These additional songs include modern re-recordings of the big “hits” from the 28 Days album, original demo recordings that preceded the album, and other songs (some written when I was 16 years old!) that didn’t make the cut for inclusion on the original cassette. It was amazingly enjoyable going through all sorts of old cassette tapes and re-discovering these recordings, and I’m very pleased with how well these early songs hold up.

Here’s the main lesson I learned during this process: if you make multi-track recordings, NEVER erase or dispose of the tracking tapes! I was such a fool in the early ‘90s…I took all the original tracking tapes from the 28 Days album and dubbed CDs onto them for listening on my car’s tape deck! (I think many of the song tracks from 28 Days were lost when I overdubbed The Jayhawks’ Hollywood Town Hall on top of them.) Therefore, none of the songs from the original album could be re-mixed or improved upon. What you hear on this CD are the exact mixes that were on the original cassette release. Thankfully I kept some tracking tapes for other songs, so you get to hear the remixed, re-EQed, and cleaned up versions of demos like “Another Bad Day” and “When You’re Away.” But I really wish I had the tracks for ALL the songs! Lesson learned.

If you’re reading this now, and you enjoy any of the songs herein, I thank you for your attention.

Remembering the past, looking forward to the future,

Jonathan Rundman, Thanksgiving Eve 2003.

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Jonathan Rundman Minneapolis, Minnesota

"bright, catchy indie pop" NEW YORK TIMES
“clever, intelligent songwriting” PASTE MAGAZINE
“clever phrasing and fresh rhymes" PERFORMING SONGWRITER
“literate…excellent…a record for anyone who hasn't given up on the idea that good songs, electric/acoustic guitars, and a great drummer are the key to all sorts of epiphanies” CITY PAGES
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