Artist : Ed Askew
Publisher : Counter Culture Chronicles
Year : 2018
C-30 cassette plus laser printed insert
Cover photo : Brandon Stanton
Limited edition of 80
Postage & packing not included
Singer-songwriter Ed Askew was born in Stamford, Connecticut in 1940. After having moved to New Haven and having studied painting at Yale School of Art there, Askew accepted a teaching job at a private prep school in 1966 to avoid being drafted. It was during his period as a teacher that he started writing songs and poetry and after having met Bernard Stollman in New York in 1967, Askew’s first album of songs Ask The Unicorn was released on Stollman’s renowned ESP-Disk one year later. Askew moved to New York City in 1987 but although he remained active as a painter, songwriter and occasional performer, not much was heard from him until 1999 when he privately released These Nights + Days on cassette. De Stijl released Askew’s LP Little Eyes in 2003, Drag City the LP Imperfiction in 2011 and Tin Angels Records the album For The World in 2013, but apart from a number of other obscure releases on cassette, CD and vinyl Askew’s music has remained a well-kept secret.
Counter Culture Chronicles has now released Ed Askew’s beautiful mini-album Newspaper Boats as a limited edition cassette. The C-30 cassette contains a brief but well-balanced collection of new songs and poems. Sung and read in a vulnerable and slightly hoarse voice, these new works tell of life’s fleetingness and melancholy beauty. Observations of Askew’s surroundings, memories of his chance meetings with Allen Ginsberg and Peter Orlovsky and colourful sketches of natural scenery along the Hudson River form a frail armada of newspaper boats drifting towards the endless ocean.