My Darling Clementine, the sobriquet of spouses Michael Weston King and Lou Dalgleish, will release their new EP, ‘Country Darkness Vol.1’ on October 11th. The 4-track set is comprised of Elvis Costello interpretations in collaboration with Steve Nieve of The Imposters / The Attractions. It comes ahead of an extended Country Darkness project that will feature further exploration and reworking of numerous Costello country songs for duet. The EP is preceded by the single “Heart Shaped Bruise”, due on digital services on Friday, October 4th.
For this project they reunited with Richard Hawley alumni Colin Elliott, Shez Sheridan and Dean Beresford, with whom they made their much-loved 2nd album ‘The Reconciliation,’ to help Michael and Lou realise their ambitions. It was produced by Colin Elliot (Richard Hawley, Jarvis Cocker, Duane Eddy) and King.
Known the world over as Elvis Costello’s right hand man, Steve Nieve has worked with Elvis since 1977, recording with him for the first time on his second album This Years Model. He was a founding member of The Attractions, and now, for over 20 years, one of The Imposters. A Rock & Roll Hall of Fame member, Nieve is one of the most in-demand session keyboard players in the world.
Writing credits on the EP include Paul McCartney (“That Day Is Done”) and Grammy-winner Loretta Lynn (“I Felt The Chill Before The Winter Came”) both of whom collaborated with Costello on the original recordings.
Having toured extensively across Europe and North America since 2011, and releasing 4 albums in that time, Dalgleish and King returned to the studio earlier this year to craft the follow-up to their 2017 country soul album ‘Still Testifying’. The new release will include an exclusive vinyl pressing and will be accompanied by a 15 date European tour plus selected UK shows this autumn.
Michael Weston King writes on the inspiration behind the record.
Making these recordings took me back to my 19-year-old-self, out buying a copy of ‘Almost Blue’ during my lunch hour. It was Elvis and Steve’s making of that album which set me, and I think many others of my generation, off along a country path to discover more about this form of music previously only viewed with suspicion. For me it became something of a pilgrimage, a vocation, even a “career.” So this feels like the completing of a musical circle of sorts — to record a selection of some of mine and Lou’s favourite EC country songs with the added thrill of performing them with Steve.
Reflecting on those early years spent listening to my hero of the keyboard [accompanying my personal king of songwriting, EC) was it any wonder that in the spring of 2019, when he sat down right next to me and began his incredible intro to our first collaboration, that I couldn’t sing for crying? Thanks Steve, for making this sulky girl very happy.
Country Darkness Vol.1 will be released via Fretsore Records on digital services worldwide and on limited edition vinyl.
Fans can pre-order the vinyl at https://mydarlingclementinemusic.co.uk/store/