Release Date 04/28/2017
Loss is always an immensely powerful catalyst for inspiration. The transcendent experience of nature reclaiming a loved one opens a void that is ready to be filled with creativity, and outlines a path of self discovery.
Following the sudden passing of his parents, Raj Sabhlok, the mastermind behind Raj and the 100’s, traded in his house for a small RV and left his hometown to hit the roads of the United States. In a two year journey of exploration and daily hikes in the American wilderness; Raj wrote approximately 300 songs. Upon the completion of a period that could be described as a songwriting pilgrimage, Raj found himself at Tiny Telephone, (John Vanderslice’s all analog recording studio) having recorded 50 songs within the span of 10 days. Encouraged by the energy of that immensely productive session, Raj and his bandmates thought it would be fun to challenge themselves to record 100 songs in only 20 days. Following that was a recording frenzy in the vein of Raj’s writing process, in which Raj and the 100’s; consisting of two members of John Vanderslice’s touring band and full time engineers at Tiny Telephone, and Jason Slota from Thao and the Get Down Stay Down, recorded 250 songs, all analog and cut live to tape with minimal overdubs, within the span of a couple months.
And out of that 250 songs, 100 formed Volume 1 of the first official release by Rajand the 100’s. Some of the songs on Volume 1 are as close to the heart as it gets, and some are self confined stories that have no connection to Raj’s experiences at all. Bearing a reflection on experiences ranging from loss, longing, separation, growing older, falling in love and rebellion, Raj and the 100’s is a project that finds home in the spot between the sonic characteristics of Rock n Roll and Pastoral American Folk, driven as much by melody as it is by lyricism. Described by John Vanderslice as ‘‘A one in a million songwriter. He’s written and recorded hundreds of EXCELLENT songs in the past few years. One of the best lyricists I’ve heard in a few years’’, Raj and the 100’s set out to explore a poetic and poignant narrative that lyrically and sonically unfolds throughout the span of one hundred songs, each chipping in their character to form the story behind the project.