America co-founder Gerry Beckley's new album, Aurora, is now available via physical media
Gerry Beckley, the illustrious singer, songwriter, performer and co-founder of legendary band America, releases his fourth solo album via our label. After releasing Aurora earlier this month digitally, the deluxe packaged record is now available at retail outlets today and will be released on vinyl at a date following shortly thereafter.
In addition to new music, Beckley has partnered with American fashion designer Todd Snyder, and together they have created a limited-edition collection of collectable tees and hoodies highlighting the photography of Beckley’s travels. That eye has traveled all over the world, and along the way Gerry started taking pictures of seemingly commonplace things that looked fresh thanks to his compositions. While touring, Beckley started taking a picture a day and sending it as a group email to his family and friends. Some of those very photos appear within the artwork of Beckley’s solo albums as well.
“Gerry is this total style maven – cars, clothes, eyewear. He’ll email me out of the blue to suggest a classic item we should make, and his photographs are an extension of this unique point of view.” says Snyder, an old pal of Gerry’s. “He makes normal things look artful, and his pictures are modern takes that get us to reconsider places we might otherwise take for granted.” So, it seemed only natural for Todd to turn some of Gerry’s favorite images into wearable works of art. The collection of tees and hoodies will be available for purchase exclusively on toddsnyder.com and select stores starting today.
Gerry's new album, Aurora, was recorded during the pandemic at his two home studios in his dual bases of Sydney, Australia, and Venice, California. It's an introspective album that takes stock of his life – past, present and future. “This is a time of great reflection whether we like it or not,” he says. “If we treat this pandemic as the lesson it could and should be, this could be a moment for great growth, because even with the immense challenges we face, there is still hope.”
As befits its simultaneous look back and forward, the songs on Aurora include “some old and some new,” unfinished demos and scratch recordings from as early as the mid-‘70s, along with tracks “started from scratch” over the past two years. New song “Tickets to the Past” marks the first time Beckley has co-written a song with longtime America partner Dewey Bunnell, and it appears somewhere other than an America album. With America, who still perform more than 100 live dates a year, unable to fully tour during the last two years, Beckley turned to “my main hobby,” writing and recording almost 40 tracks, pared down to the 11 included on the album.
Sequenced like a traditional vinyl album, with a Side 1 and 2, Aurora is the work of a lifelong performer who hasn’t stopped growing, personally and creatively, with a beginning, middle and end.
“When you hold a mirror up to your life, it’s hard to control how much of your life is in that reflection,” he says. “I don’t want to say it’s about one thing in particular, I’d rather leave it more open-ended.”