Genre: Art/IndieRock

The Story of Nash Albert

The Story of Nash Albert

Let me tell you a few words about myself so you know my story: I’ve been into folk singing from early childhood. Being originally from Georgia, Georgian folk songs were sung traditionally all over the place there. I would wake up and go to sleep hearing at times grandmas and at times my mom humming to my ear. Once I got a hold of so-called bone music smuggled into the USSR which hit me hard, very hard, turning my world upside down. I saw myself in it, with all my protest and romanticism, and the whole nine yards. It was a weapon, a peaceful weapon for change. In a nutshell, I delved into rock ‘n’ roll at the age of 15. I put together my first band when I was 16. After Gorbachev’s Perestroika kicked off in 1991, my college band SALAMANDRA flew to the US where I spent about 6 years playing in different bands, mainly in South US and Cali. Nothing to write home about, just an ordinary story of a musician struggling to make it big, except that everyone took us for and sometimes referred to us as commie-pinko punks. Living in the US was no bed of roses for us. In between occasional gigs, we dug red clay of the State of Georgia for a living. Once again, it was a struggle for survival, but this time in the free world. The only time we had something resembling a breakthrough was when we met with Mr. Ahmet Ertegun, following a simple phone call to Atlantic Records. Originally from Turkey, Ahmet traces his ancestry to Trabzon—just like Bob Dylan, by the way—and Trabzon borders Georgia, my home country. To cut it short, Mr. Ertegun still out of curiosity but gets a kick from our music and helps us with recording of two of our songs One-Man War and Rain (both on YouTube under Nash Albert). These songs were produced and recorded in 1993 together with Alan Shacklock. Right after it Atlantic sends their A&R guy to Atlanta, where our band resided at the time, to check us out,showcasing at Cotton Club. Still in the backroom before the show, our drummer sneaks in two big-ass bottles of bourbon, along with all kinds of shit, we killed it all. Long story short, we got trashed bad and fucked up the show. We blew our only chance—total fuckup! That was my first experience of team screw-up. Our journey was not over, though, not by any stretch of the imagination. On the contrary, we matured as rock ‘n’ rollers in the US, and I cherish every moment of our time there. At some point, sick and tired of futile attempts at seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, we split in 1996. I went back to Moscow for good, and the rest of the band headed to our Georgia by the Black Sea, sandwiched between the Caucasus Mountains, to play and sing, make and drink wine…. Back in 1996, Russia was a hotbed of crime, so a gangster friend of mine—God rest his soul—in charge of the nightlife protection racket in Moscow offered me a gig. Back in Moscow, I could not recognize the country… it was totally different, with the music scene booming, unlike what we have today, unfortunately. I put together a band, BLAST, which quickly became a hit touring Russia.Around that time, I recorded the Crisis of Genre album with Martin “Youth” Glover. The album proved a success in the UK and, we were all over the radio in 2013-2014: BBC1, BBC2, BBC London, Absolute Radio, Planetrock, XFM, and so on and so forth. Euronews and Reuters rolled out stories about me and my band, so I ended up spending most of 2014 in the UK. We played shows together with various well-known musicians includingBlur,Franz Ferdinand, Kaiser Chiefs, The Charlatans, The Strokes, Suede, Bloc Party, Supergrass. Yet we seemed to be going around in circles, total stagnation, so I realized that we were missing something, something deeper, much deeper, and form that would embody this depth. And I kept looking…. And then it dawned on me that what we were missing was the magic and hunger for creativity and authenticity so characteristic of my inaugural original bandwith which I had embraced, taken in American culture. Without further ado, I got in touch with my old bandmates in Georgia and pitched the idea of a reunion. Alas, they were all in their everyday routine and concerns up to their eyeballs, so the idea was dismissed as trivial—they would not dwell on the past, much less relive it. Well, in the early summer of 2014, I went solo relying and focusing on myself. One night, at an event hosted by Alan McGee in Liverpool, I met up with Ian McNabb (Icicle Works). I had known him from Alan McGee’s venue events in Liverpool where I played. We went on to get to know each other better and became good buddies. Ian offered to produce my solo album, and that is how Rude Beggar was recorded in 2014 and hit the stores on March 9, 2015. When you are in this industry, you meet lots of nice and talented people—you make friends with some, and even met soulmates and creative collaborators. One such person is musician and producer Ilya Mazaev, who has become part of the fabric of my latest musical endeavors. In 2017, I recorded a new single titled Better Home which I produced together with Ilya. Ilya Mazaev is good friends with Tim Palmer, a world-class producer, who loved the material and helped mix some songs. Overwhelmed by occasional fits of nostalgia, I once again contacted old friend of mine RicBerie the owner of SVAS studio in the Caucasus mountains area, with whom I occasionally write songs—he does some lyrics together with me. I appreciate his input, so I arranged a visit to Georgia with Ilia Mazaev to spend quality time in mountainous area and possibly drawing some inspiration. That proved to be a turning point as we, the full original lineup, somehow got back together. Totally unplanned, unexpected, out of the blue…. It just happened on its own, as though it were meant to happen…. And just like that, our long-standing craving was quenched and materialized in the form of an album called “&YET…”, which is on the way to be released in 2020. “It’s the first time in my life that all my personal internal blocks and barriers were completely turned off. Everything we did was very sincere. We were capturing what was coming from our souls without any filtering.” –Nash Albert