“Today’s #DeskOfTheDay gives ‘one-man-band’ a whole new meaning. Watch “I Prefer My Phone,” a 2021 Tiny Desk Contest entry from @CuchulainK” – NPR Music, June 23, 2021

EUGENE, Oregon (August 17, 2021) – Cuchulain releases the genre-bending album, FEAT on November 5.  For the Eugene-based singer-songwriter and born extrovert, his way of coping with confinement was to reach out and collaborate virtually with other musicians. Each song on this album is a collaboration – Cuchulain wrote all music and lyrics, and then sent the demos to talented friends. Each track features a guest artist, and over twenty musicians around the United States and world contributed parts to the arrangements. Recorded in home studios of all levels of professionalism – some horn parts were captured by smartphone – from LA to Austin, Seattle to Chicago, SF to DC, Philly to Hungary, this album is meant to be a source of light in the dark, a gathering of a community, a tiny example of the show going on. In short, a feat.

 FEAT’s album title came to be because every song has a featured artist, labeled as “feat.” in the song title. It’s also called that because this album was made during the pandemic, virtually in everyone’s home studios. And it continues to be a feat to get through this pandemic. 

For his last record, Songs for Grownups, released earlier this year, Cuchulain recorded almost all of the instruments himself in his 650-square foot apartment bedroom in Palo Alto, CA. Tired of driving himself crazy listening to endless takes of himself, he decided he would get all his friends in the studio for a weekend and make a live album in a room. And then the pandemic hit. So he tried the next best thing: he asked his musician friends to work with him virtually on songs, sending drafts back and forth, à la the Postal Service. The tunes changed shape along the way, every time for the better. Cuchulain says, “Music for me is about community. Collaboration, joy, communication, and connection between human beings. My music sounds so much better when other people bring their talents and ideas to it. This is honestly maybe my favorite album I’ve ever made, I think for that exact reason – just that so many people worked on these songs and made them better than any one of us could alone.” 

 Album credits include:

Shawn Barry – piano, clarinet, beats, album guide and spiritual guru – San Jose, CA

Claire Daviss – vocals on “Don’t Come Easy” – Eugene, OR

Raphael Shapiro – vocals on “Come on Through” – San Diego, CA

Jenner Fox – vocals on “Good Morning Eugene” – Sisters, OR

Julian Pitt – drums on “Iris” – Palo Alto, CA

Micah Motenko – keyboards, electric organ on “Don’t Come Easy” & “Come On Through” – Austin, TX

Ethan Schneider – drums on “Don’t Come Easy,” “Come on Through” – Austin, TX

Natalie Spehar – cello on “Blue November” – NYC

Katie Kuffel – vocals and cello on “Iris” – Seattle, WA

Juliana Marie Baratta – alto saxophone on “Don’t Come Easy” – Redwood City, CA

Allison Rosenberg – trumpet on “Don’t Come Easy”, “Come On Through”, & “Wolf At The Door” – Washington DC

Joe Kye – vocals and violins on “Maybe” – Portland, OR

Matt Jaffe – vocals, guitar, and wurli on the Beatles cover – Ojai, CA

Paul Leo – all instruments except acoustic guitar on “Wolf At The Door” – Chicago, IL

Casey Lipka – upright bass on “Maybe” – LA 

Garrett Burke – drums on “Maybe” – Philadelphia, PA

Mark Fedronic – trombone on “Wolf At The Door” – Hungary 

FEAT Track Listing

  1. Good Morning Eugene feat. Jenner Fox 
  2. Don’t Come Easy feat. Handsome Hound
  3. Come On Through feat. R.O. Shapiro 
  4. Blue November feat. Shawn Barry
  5. Iris feat. Katie Kuffel
  6. Maybe (I Don’t Feel (The Same Way (As You))) feat. Joe Kye
  7. Wolf At The Door feat. Ice Giants
  8. With A Little Help From My Friends feat. Matt Jaffe

About Cuchulain

Cuchulain — a low-voiced songsmith with a wry sense of humor – has a big name to fill. Cuchulain (pronounced “ka-hoo-lin”) was named (yes, by his parents) after the famous Irish mythological hero. And like his mythological namesake, Cuchulain has journeyed far and wide, finding himself and his songs shaped by each place he stops. He has honed his genre-bending version of folk music by incorporating the sounds of his many hometowns. His single “I Prefer My Phone” drew the attention of NPR Music, who said his Tiny Desk Contest performance “gave ‘one-man-band’ a whole new meaning,” referencing his performance of all instruments (guitar, bass, piano, and drums) in the video.

Tour Dates

Portland, OR – Laurelthirst Pub – Fri Oct 15

Seattle WA – Conor Byrne Pub – Sat Oct 16

Spokane WA – Lucky You Lounge – Fri Oct 22

Enterprise OR – Terminal Gravity – Sat Oct 23

Missoula MT – house show – Sun Oct 24

Polsen MT – house show – Thu Oct 21

Eugene OR – WOW Hall – Album release show – Fri Nov 5 

Portland OR – White Eagle – Sat Dec 4 

Praise For Cuchulain

The cross country (and Atlantic) project therefore not only helped break the isolation of lockdown, but also reinforced the mutual relationship between creativity and human connection… What emerges is a track warm if somewhat wistful, the playful energy undercut by a lingering sadness. An awareness of time passing.” – Jon Doyle, Various Small Flames 

“Charming and poignant americana.” – Glide Magazine

“The words transcended while encompassing a personal moment.” – Matt Denis, Eugene Register Guard 

“There’s a Leonard Cohen cadence and observational wit at play, filtered through Cuchulain‘s voice that recalls Evan Dando of The Lemonheads. It’s a clever and lyrically impressive track that rolls along perfectly like a Randy Newman lost gem.” – Post To Wire