For his latest album, Brooklyn’s Aaron Hodges (a.k.a. Longshoreman) gives us Au Sable, a collection inspired by his great-grandfather Kin Hana, a Japanese immigrant who settled in Au Sable Forks, New York during the Prohibition era. Hana lived a quintessentially American life, moving to the States at a young age, establishing his own restaurant on the Au Sable River, and running it in peace save for one moment of outlaw violence, when he and his family’s establishment was robbed by infamous golfer and rumrunner Laverne Moore, more famously known as John Montague.
Now, I doubt that you should search for direct references to these events on the album; lead single “Long Hair,” streaming below, doesn’t reveal any obvious story or message about the past in its gloomy folk balladry. What’s maybe more likely is that Hodges is letting his personal ancestry and ties to American folklore seep into his work, giving it an air of timelessness, a reminder of a simpler time that still calls out to us in this era of frenetic, online globalism.
Au Sable is out August 24 on Hodges’ self-run label, Black Meadow.
Au Sable Tracklist:
02 “The Mountain”
05 “Long Hair”
-artist photo by Uys du Buisson