Rod Picott to Release Double Album + Book of Corresponding Short Stories

Out Past the Wires to be released March 30

NASHVILLE, TN — Nearly two decades into his songwriting career, Rod Picott hits a prolific peak with Out Past the Wires (available March 30), a double album that serves as the inspiration for an accompanying book of short stories.

Out Past the Wires arrives less than three years after Fortune, Picott’s previous collection of American roots music. During that time, he’s become a published poet, written a screenplay, two books of short fiction and the first draft of a novel. He puts all these those skillsets to work with Out Past the Wires, whose 22 songs mix poetry and prose in equal doses. The result is the strongest album of his career, filled with electrified moments that channel Bruce Springsteen’s anthemic stomp, lyrics worthy of Leonard Cohen’s work, and quietly heartbreaking moments grounded in Picott’s acoustic guitar and road-worn voice.

“You write what you know,” says Picott, whose background — including more than a dozen years spent in the construction business, where he specialized as a sheetrock hanger — informs his blue-collar songwriting. “My father was a welder. I was banging nails at 18 years old. We bailed out the cellar every spring, because my father couldn’t afford a sub-pump for years. When you’ve actually done that work, there’s an honesty in the sense of language that you can access. I listen to a song like ‘Take Home Pay,’ which I wrote with Slaid Cleaves, and I know there’s nothing dishonest there. We really painted the right picture of that character.”

Many of the characters from Out Past the Wires are wild-eyed and desperate, driven to extremes by a life lived on the edge. Others are heartbroken. Some find themselves coming to grips with their own mortality. All of them are vividly brought to life by Picott, whose accompanying book of short stories — also titled Out Past the Wires — dives deeper into those characters’ narratives. Influenced by Flannery O’Connor and Raymond Carver, the stories are dark and richly-written, shining light on an author who packs as powerful a punch with his pen as with his guitar.

“When you move from songwriting to poetry or prose, the shackles come off a bit,” he says. “That was a lovely experience. I got to take these characters and expand their stories. Each short story is titled after a song on the record, so there’s a connection between all of them. Some are fully fleshed out stories of the characters from the songs, and some are more of an extension of the concept behind the song. I didn’t hold myself to being so strictly narrative-based this time.”

Although he wrote the short stories alone, Picott reached out to several friends to help record Out Past the Wires. Slaid Cleaves co-wrote four songs with Picott, while producer Neilson Hubbard, who produced 2015’s Fortunes, returned to the fold to oversee the newest set of recording sessions. This time, the two rounded up a band of Nashville-based A-listers — including Will Kimbrough/Electric Guitars (Emmylou Harris, Steve Earle, Rodney Crowell) Lex Price/Bass (K.D. Lang), Evan Hutchings/Drums (Brandi Carlisle) and Kris Donegan/Electric Guitars (Sara Evans) — for the album’s hardest-hitting songs. Out Past the Wires also contains a handful of stripped-down acoustic songs as well, creating an album that highlights the full range of Picott’s work at its most potent.

Picott will tour heavily in support of Out Past the Wires, see below for latest tour schedule. For more information, please visit http://rodpicott.com/.

On tour:
Jan 22 City Winery Lounge Nashville TN
Feb 7 Natalie’s Worthington OH
Feb 8 Southgate House Revival Newport KY
Feb 9 House Concert Paris KY
Feb 10 River Dog Music Retreat Oberlin OH
Feb 22 Dust of Daylight House Concert Bergen Norway
Feb 23 Iris Scene Odda Norway
Feb 25 Bonanza Oslo Norway
Feb 26 House Concert Trondheim Norway
March 1 Museum Nic Jonk Grootschermer
March 2 Muziekpodium Bakkeeveen Netherlands
March 3 Het Nieuwe Dijkhuis Doetinchem Netherlands
March 4 Herberg Tiengemeten Netherlands
March 5 Meneer Frits Eindhoven Netherlands
March 6 Kloveniersdoelen Middelburg Netherlands
March 7 Het Heerenlogement Netherlands
March 9 Xinix Nieuwendijk Netherlands
March 10 De Amer Amen Netherlands
March 11 Wageningen Junushoff
March 14 What’s Cookin’@ Leytonstone Ex-Servicemens Club London England
March 15 Garstang Unplugged at The Kenlis Arms Lancashire England
March 16 The Greystones Sheffield England
March 17 Davenham Players Theatre Northwich England
March 18 House Concert North Linconshire England
March 20 The Musician Leicester England
March 21 The Biddulph Arms Straffordshire England
March 22 Sounds In The Suburbs at The Doublet Glasgow Scotland
March 23 Backstage @ The Green Hotel Kinross Scotland
March 24 Chapel Allerton Seven Arts Center Leeds England
March 25 Nottingham The Maze England
March 26 The Greys Brighton England
March 27 House Concert High Wycombe England
March 28 The Forge @ The Anvil Basingstoke England
March 29 Green Note Presents @ The Old Queen’s Head London (Islington)
March 30 The Tunnels Bristol England
April 6 The Stage @ KDHX St Louis MO
April 7 Knuckleheads Kansas City MO
April 8 Byron’s Pomeroy IA
April 10 The Blue Door Oklahoma City OK
April 12 Mucky Duck Houston TX
April 13 The Rock Room Austin TX
April 14 Poodies Spicewood TX
April 20 Black Dog House Concerts Chicago IL
April 21 Honky Tonk House Concerts Streetsboro OH
April 22 Mandy The Suess Dog House Concert Columbus OH
April 28 Sweeney Todd’s Minneapolis MN
May 4 Morro Bay Wine Cellars Morro Bay CA (Songwriters At Play Series)
May 5 House Concert Davis CA
May 6 Private Show Berkeley CA
May 8 White Eagle Saloon Portland OR
May 9 Treehouse Cafe Bainbridge Island WA
May 11 Bozzini’s Chilliwack B.C. Canada
May 25 House Concert Westchester NY
May 26 House Concert Blakeslee PA
June 10 Acoustic Grill Ontario Canada
June 11 Ottawa House Concert Canada
June 12 O’Reilly’s Ale House Perth Ontario Canada
June 13 Batstone’s Northern Ramble Renfrew Ontario Canada
June 16 Royal Canadian Legion Branch 39 Espanola Ontario Canada
August 15 Songwriter Celebration Lake Tahoe CA

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