Andrew Bird Unveils New Version Of 'Manifest' Featuring Erika Wennerstrom
Today, Grammy nominated, internationally acclaimed multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Andrew Bird unveils a new version of "Manifest," a duet featuring Erika Wennerstrom from the Heartless Bastards. This new version premiered this morning via KCRW's flagship show "Morning Becomes Eclectic" and is out now on Loma Vista Recordings.
"Manifest" originates from Bird's My Finest Work Yet, which is nominated for Best Folk Album at this year's 62nd Annual Grammy Awards. The song has also previously been recorded with a string quintet alongside the album version. "Manifest" reflects on the evolution of mankind and climate change-Rolling Stone praises, "Andrew Bird unspools an ambitious take on the circle of life." Check out his "Making Manifest" video here.
"When it occurred to me that Manifest would work well as a duet I thought of Erika right away because her voice is so deep and grounded," says Bird. "Not to get all mystical on you, but it just sounds like the earth. She brought something new to the song and hearing that other voice can make you listen in a different way. I don't like to preach in my songs. Manifest just lays it all out there alongside the incontrovertible evidence of an environmental tipping point and says, 'don't pretend you can't hear.' I've been a fan of Erika's since we used to tour with Heartless Bastards to her solo work. She doesn't sound like anyone else. Unbridled and unpretentious. A true artist."
"I had recently reconnected with Andrew on another matter, and he just happened to be thinking about adapting Manifest as a duet at the time. Lucky me!" recounts Wennerstrom. "When I listened to the lyrics I identified with them very closely. I have had deep growing concern of our environment the last several years, and I think it's very important this issue stay in the forefront. Andrew is such an incredible talent in every aspect of his songs. The writing, the playing, and his wonderful voice. He's the whole package. I'm a huge fan, and honored to work with him on something."
Recently cast in the FX Limited Series Fargo, in a role written expressly for him, 2019 marks a monumental year for Bird. In addition to My Finest Work Yet, which continues to receive critical acclaim from the likes of NPR, the Los Angeles Times, Pitchfork, Paste and more, Bird recently released a collection of holiday songs on a brand new EP entitled, HARK!. The EP features original tracks "Alabaster" and "Night's Falling," as well as a handful of beautifully realized holiday classics including "Holy Night," "White Christmas," and Vince Guaraldi's epic "Skating."
Bird has spent the better part of 2019 captivating audiences across the globe on tour. One of the most notable moments was Bird's joint performance of William Bell's "I Forgot To Be Your Lover" at this year's SXSW with breakout artist Yola, who is nominated for Best New Artist and Best Americana Album Grammy awards. The performance was called one of the fests best by Variety and more-watch here. Next month Bird will play a five-night sold out residency at Chicago's Fourth Presbyterian Church from December 9 through 13 as part of his annual "Gezelligheid" concerts. A Dutch term that loosely translates to "cozy," the Gezelligheid performances will feature Grammy nominated artist, Madison Cunningham.
Andrew Bird is a Grammy nominated, internationally acclaimed musician, songwriter and composer who has released fifteen records to date. Recording and touring extensively, Bird has performed around the world at festivals and renowned institutions including Carnegie Hall, Sydney Opera House and Walt Disney Concert Hall. A TED Talks presenter, a New Yorker Festival guest and an op-ed contributor for the New York Times, Bird will also debut on the cast of Fargo's forthcoming installment, airing on FX in 2020. Bird's holiday EP HARK! and newest full-length album, My Finest Work Yet, are both out now on Loma Vista Recordings.