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Delicate Steve Announces New Album 'Delicate Steve Sings'

Delicate Steve. Photo Credit, Eleanor Petry

Steve Marion, the critically acclaimed–and completely wordless–songwriter and guitarist known as Delicate Steve, is announcing a new album called Delicate Steve Sings (out August 16th on ANTI-). Is the album title a reference to the instantly recognisable “voice” of his guitar? Does he actually sing this time? Has he not been singing all along? That’s the crux of Sings—Marion is the rare guitarist where you can put on any of his records and know exactly who’s playing. In an indie rock landscape stuffed end-to-end with guitars and amplifiers, nobody else sounds like this.

That unique voice has kept Steve busy in an unpredictable variety of settings. The sheer spread of his work outside his own records—collaborating with Miley Cyrus and Paul Simon, playing in Amen Dunes and the Black Keys, and being sampled by Kanye—doesn’t mean Steve’s a chameleon. It means he’s singular.

One night while on a trip to Greece, Marion looked out over the sea while listening to Willie Nelson’s pop standards record Stardust, a cosmic epiphany washing over him about what his next record could be. Delicate Steve Sings is a record centered on channeling iconic voices with his guitar. In doing so, Marion is casting himself in the role of iconic singers like Willie who make standards their own. In the process, he reveals just how singular (dare we say iconic) that voice is. The guitar sings these songs—smoothly, sweetly, boldly, and on its own terms.

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Delicate Steve Sings, was recorded with Jonathan Rado on bass, Kosta Galanopolous on drums, Renata Zeiguer providing strings, and co-writer Elliot Bergman. You can hear this team of exceptional musicians approach the album with the same smooth reverence you’d hear on something like Willie Nelson's classic. Still, there’s a requisite subversiveness to what Marion’s doing here—though there are some covers, this isn’t a full-on standards album. Today, Steve is sharing a first taste of the LP, an original song with a title that suggests it might be new recordings of classic. That single is called 'I'll Be There,' and it is accompanied by a video directed by Joe Cappa.

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