Park City’s Sundog Sky rises from the quarantine with a debut album
For information about Sundog Sky and the album “Fishing in a Pair of Jeans,” visit facebook.com/sundogsky.
Park City’s Sundog Sky will add a colorful landmark on its musical, blues-rock journey in the shape of its debut album “Fishing in a Pair of Jeans.”
The album drops Friday, Aug. 14, on all streaming services including Spotify, iTunes, Apple Music and Google Play, and the band will sell a limited 100 CDs, said keyboardist William Sangster.
“It will be good to have a whole collection of songs out there that will show people the range of our stuff,” Sangster said. “I wish I could add that we have an album release show coming up, but that’s not going to happen at the moment because of COVID.”
The band’s fans have already heard two of the songs from the 10-track album. Sundog Sky released its debut single “Barstool Blues” in June and released its new single “In the Gutter” on July 24.
Like those songs, the rest of the tracks were recorded and engineered at the end of April at Pale Horse Sound by studio owner Greg Downs in Sugar House.
The whole experience flowed smoothly for Sangster and his bandmates, drummer Luke Roberts and guitarist Jack Foster.
“We had a nice workflow once we got into the studio, and had Greg run everything,” Sangster said.
The band also did its part to keep the flow.
“We had everything plotted out, and had all the songs we wanted to do ready to go,” Sangster said. “That said, there were a few we had second guessed on. So we sat down and tried out different tempos and made sure the song structures were solid.”
Being prepared also helped the musicians find some flexibility within the songs.
“In a band setting, you can have an idea that sounds pretty good, but then the engineer and the rest of the band may have some ideas that will make it sound better,” Sangster said. “So you have to keep your options open.”
Most of the songs were written in the past couple of years, but one, “Getting That Feeling,” was penned five years ago.
“That was the first song Luke and I ever wrote together,” Sangster said. “We did it when we decided to form a band on our own, and it survived throughout the years.”
The first thing Sundog Sky did was play together to record the basic tracks, and then came back individually to record some overdubs, which included Sangster playing a lap-steel guitar.
“We also overdubbed the solos and vocals, and did minimal tweaks,” he said.
The biggest challenge for the band was dealing with the COVID-19 social distancing.
“Because we were in the middle of the quarantine, we hadn’t played together for awhile,” Sangster said. “So it took some time to get back into the groove in general.”
The album also features a guest, Park City-based singer-songwriter Wyatt Pike, who introduced Sundog Sky to Pale Horse Sound.
“Wyatt played bass for us, because we don’t have a permanent bass player at the moment,” Sangster said.
The band named the album “Fishing in a Pair of Jeans” after a brainstorm.
“It’s the title of one of the songs that kind of has this chanting groove to it,” Sangster said. “We had come up with some other ideas, but we really wanted to choose a title that was a little more casual and funny.”
Sangster’s friend Angelina Ortiz created the cover art.
“She worked with me at Canyons Mountain Sports last winter and showed me some of her cool art,” he said. “So we contracted her to make it.”
Although recording an album had always been Sundog Sky’s goal, Sangster said he’s glad it took a few years to see it done.
“We did have a batch of songs a year after we broke off on our own, but we really weren’t thinking realistically,” he said. “We all thought we could record some things at my house, but we didn’t. And I think that was a good thing, because we wanted to do it right. We didn’t want to just settle on the first thing that we thought about.”
By taking its time, Sundog Sky is ready to release a debut that the members are proud of.
“We all feel it’s great to have the album as a memory we can attach to the band,” Sangster said. “Even if we break up we will still have this collection of songs.”
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“One of the underlined themes of these works is my hope that if people see all Black faces in ski gear, conceptually, it will trigger some thoughts so they will feel different the next time they get on the mountain and see a person of color skiing or snowboarding.”