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Rain Perry’s album Men is an unvarnished tribute to the guys. The third collaboration with Grammy- nominated producer Mark Hallman, Men is the result of a successful Kickstarter campaign was released on Precipitous Records in 2013.
The set kicks off with the exuberant road anthem “Get In The Car” and includes a sweet folk duet with beloved Austin troubadour Matt the Electrician (“One Of Those Days”), a cover of the Chuck Prophet barn-burner “Let’s Do Something Wrong” and a psychedelic trance tune (“Umami”) that is either about sex or food (you can pick).
Rain met her husband when she was eighteen, and this album is a collection of songs that centers on the sweetness and the out-and-out struggle of enduring love.
Another important man in Rain’s life is her longtime collaborator, Austin producer Mark Hallman. Honing the lush and funky alt-folk/pop sound they developed on Cinderblock Bookshelves, Internal Combustion and the CW theme song “Beautiful Tree,” Perry and Hallman have hit their stride as a creative duo with Men.
Known for his production work with Carole King, Eliza Gilkyson and Ani DiFranco, Hallman is less appreciated as a stellar multi-instrumentalist. Besides some well-placed cameos, Hallman created all the sounds on the album except the lead vocals.
In addition to Matt the Electrician, guests on the record include Leonard Cohen’s longtime backup singer and Divine Horsemen chanteuse Julie Christensen, beloved former Texas State Musician Sara Hickman, guitarist extraordinaire Andrew Hardin, quirky banjoist Donna Lynn Caskey, cellist Brian Standefer and stellar Austin pickers Scrappy Jud Newcomb and André Moran.
The photo on the album cover is especially meaningful to Rain. It’s of a group of her grandfather’s Marine buddies she found in a family scrapbook. (Her grandfather appears on the CD itself.)
Rain’s song “Beautiful Tree” was the theme for the CW Series Life Unexpected. She is the Grand Prize winner (Folk) of the John Lennon Songwriting Competition, the Grand Prize winner overall of the ROCKRGRL Discoveries Contest and a finalist at Telluride Troubadour. Men (PR-106) is her fourth album on her own Precipitous Records.