During NOLA Jazzfest 2017, southern roots troubadour and New Orleans-transplant Seth Walker gathered fellow New Orleanians’ Myles Weeks on bass and Johnny Vidacovich on drums at local recording studio, The Shed, to cut a new song he’d written entitled, “Spirits Moving.” He’d also recruit the great John Medeski on Hammond B-3 and Jano Rix of The Wood Brothers to produce, while later adding a second drum part by Doug Belote. Walker and company would build the track upon a deep syncopated groove with lyrics that speak to the connection he felt with his new adopted hometown and the wellspring of inspiration he was drawing from its storied musical heritage. To be released as a digital exclusive single on November 10 via record label, Royal Potato Family, “Spirits Moving” is one of Walker’s funkiest, most inspired songs yet in a repertoire that’s already rich with what many consider to be some of modern Americana’s most accomplished and soulful songwriting. A video for the song was later assembled drawing on footage from both the “Spirits Moving” recording session and Seth Walker’s band performing the song live.
“‘Spirits Moving’ was originally inspired by a live video I saw of Nina Simone summoning the spirits in her own unique way—the never ending search for the portal into the stream of inspiration. I wrote this down in New Orleans, where spirits are always on the move, so the slip-sliding street beat feel came naturally,” explains Walker. “Jazzfest was upon us, so we had the idea of getting Johnny Vidacovich and John Medeski into the mix on the recording. It was a first for them in the studio together. My bass player Myles Weeks, another Louisiana-native played bass to round out the session so we were firmly planted in the mud. With the help of Doug Belote on a second drum part and Jano Rix in the producer chair, I feel we captured a little magic here. Hope it moves you as it did us.”
Seth Walker has a handful of shows in Texas and Arkansas before the end of the year. They’ll then open 2018 with a three month stint on the road, including shows in Florida, as well as Delbert McClinton’s Sandy Beaches Cruise. Following that, they’ll head West for performances across the Western U.S. before jumping the pond for a tour of Europe. A live album and a new studio album are also in the works for release next year.