Thao & The Get Down Stay Down | 09/01/13

Image: thao newsletter photo

To coincide with the release of We The Common, the new album from San Francisco-based musician and activist Thao Nguyen, Thao & The Get Down Stay Down have announced that the album’s title track will be released as a single on the same day, February 4th, and you can stream it below.

Listen to “We The Common (For Valerie Bolden)HERE.

Inspired by Thao’s first visit to Valley State Prison with the California Coalition for Women Prisoners, “We The Common” maintains the left-of-centre folk roots of previous single “Holy Roller” with the addition of a catchy and spirited chorus. During this first visit, she met Valerie Bolden; a prisoner that struck a chord with her:
“We sat down and immediately started talking and joking, almost like old friends. We kept it mostly light, but then she’d matter-of-factly talk about missing her daughters, about believing in God but not understanding what she was supposed to be doing in prison, about not wanting to die behind bars. But she’s sentenced to life without parole. After I left, I found I couldn’t stop thinking about her and the things she told me and the way she told them, and a lot of that ended up in ‘We the Common.’”

Thao also appears in an online series of lighthearted shorts about the creation of We The Common. Titled Behind The Making Of The Making Of How It Was Made, the series will run alongside the We The Common’s release. The first episode - called “The Hand of God” and directed by Lauren Tabak - is streaming now at
Thao notes that she “wanted to offer a behind the scenes look at the making and release of this record, but I wanted it to be entertaining. The best way to do that was to make merciless fun of myself. This series also marks my return to acting, which I left in high school after I had that one line in that play.”

We The Common will be available on CD (RBN020CD), LP (RBN020LP) and digitally (RBN020D). As well as this, the deluxe edition of the record (RBN020LPX) can be pre-ordered which includes a limited edition 7” with covers of Melanie’s “Brand New Key” and The Troggs’ “With A Girl Like You”. The 7” is also available as a download with pre-orders of the CD. Pre-order HERE.