Ian Felice set to play rare solo show in Leeds

Ian Felice, rare solo gig.
Ian Felice, rare solo gig.

New Yorker Ian Felice is making a rare solo visit to the UK this month and will be in Leeds for a gig.

Currently taking a break from esteemed band The Felice Brothers, Ian is over in the UK for a handful of shows in support of his first solo LP, ‘In The Kingdom of Dreams’ and will take to the stage at the Brudenell Social Club on Thursday, November 30.

’In The Kingdom Of Dreams’ was recorded in Ian’s childhood home of Palenville NY, with his brother Simone Felice on production duties. Simone produced and co-wrote recent hit albums from The Lumineers and Bat For Lashes.

On the album, Ian was joined by the original Felice Brothers line-up of James Felice on keys, Simone Felice on drums and Josh Rawson on bass.

Ian has been the lead singer and songwriter for The Felice Brothers for over a decade. Born and raised in the Catskill Mountains he moved to New York when he was 18 to study art and soon after began writing songs and performing with his brothers Simone and James.

The Felice Brothers was conceived in 2006 after the recording of Iantown, a 10 song album of Ian’s first songs recorded in one night in January of 2006. In the weeks and months that followed, The Felice Brothers began playing bars, restaurants and busking street corners and subways, joined by their friends Josh Rawson on bass and Greg Farley on the fiddle. They continue to play and work as a band after 12 years of prolific song writing and performance and the creation of some nine albums of original material.

On Ian’s first outing as a solo act he explains: “When I began writing the songs that would become ‘In The Kingdom Of My Dreams’ many were based on memories of my past but not necessarily all literal or in a logical sequence. I became interested in the pull between reality and unreality and also in how time affects memory.

“By the end of 2016 I was run down from touring America, riding out the storm of political mania and juggling a few personal dilemmas (including the revelation that I would soon be a father). The Kingdom Of Dreams became a place where I could escape from the numbing flood of data that permeates modern life and try to unravel pieces of my past, rearrange memories with dreams or lines from my imagination and construct something that functioned outside the limits of reality.

“Many of the songs deal with childhood memories of Palenville and its people, like the song ‘In Memoriam’, which is partly about the death of my stepfather when I was eight, ‘Water Street’ that confronts my fears of becoming a father, or ‘21st Century’ that deals with mental illness and politics on a more universal level. It only seemed right that I should make the album there, along the green banks of the Katterskill Creek and with my brother Simone as producer.

“The result is a pretty reflective record that hopefully blows some cobwebs from the window of my psyche. Many of the things that I was writing at the time didn’t work as songs and so I published a companion book of poetry, Hotel Swampland.”