Trapper Schoepp latest single is all about the insistent rhythm, driven by an urgent strum, swift fiddle and pulsing bass. Light, bright mandolin, soaring harmonica and an engaging vocal melody all add to a memorable song. It’s a rootsy rocker that explores the story of an Iraq war veteran, who struggles with life when he returns home. Schoepp explains: “PTSD has taken hold of an Iraq war veteran on ‘Cliffs of Dover’. He can’t escape the sounds of bullets and is torn up inside and out, reeling from the trauma of a failed war. I wrote this in response to war stories heard through Milwaukee’s Guitars 4 Vets organization – a non-profit I’ve worked with that provides guitars and lessons to veterans in need. This song lends lines from the World War II anthem ‘The White Cliffs of Dover’ by Vera Lynn. With that song and the recent international wars in mind, this song is sung as a call to peace and a remembrance of those we’ve lost.” Indeed, it’s an anthem for the lost and for those who are suffering.
The song was produced by John Jackson (The Jayhawks, Ray Davies) and Patrick Sansone (Wilco) and was recorded at Johnny Cash’s famous cabin. Some of that old Cash magic finds it’s way into the song. The accompanying video, directed by Joseph Cash at the Cash Cabin in Hendersonville, features artful shots of Schoepp and the band in the studio interspersed with playful footage outside the cabin.
‘Cliffs of Dover’ appears on Schoepp’s upcoming album ‘Siren Songs’, for which the cover photo was taken by the pond where Johnny Cash would read letters sent to him by Bob Dylan. It’s been quite the journey to this point for Trapper Schoepp, who became the youngest person ever to share a co-write with Dylan in 2019. Schoepp put music to one of Dylan’s previously unseen lyric sheets from his early recordings and the fortune of finding these lost words was matched by Dylan agreeing to jointly publish the song. Read more about this fabulous story here.
Look out for the new album, which is due out on 21st April. In the meantime, enjoy this.
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