Press Kit

 

About David Starr & beauty and ruin


Beauty and Ruin is an intriguing project, with songs that mirror the tragedy of the book. The entire project is an “aha!” moment: the concept of writing songs to tell the tales of a haunting book’s characters. And more than that, Beauty and Ruin pinpoints the essence of the human experience.
— Melissa Clarke, Americana Highways

Americana artist David Starr is embarking on a new musical and literary adventure with a collection of songs inspired by Of What Was, Nothing Is Left, a novel written by his grandfather in 1972. Beauty And Ruin, recorded in Nashville, is produced and arranged by John Oates and co-produced by David Starr and David Kalmusky.

The final book Fred Starr published before his death, Of What Was, Nothing Is Left is a story of tragedy, family dysfunction, and denial set in rural southwest Arkansas. After working with John Oates (Hall & Oates) on his 2017 The Head And Heart EP, David approached him with the idea: what if we gave several of our favorite songwriters a copy of the book and asked them to write for a concept album based on the story?

Starr and Oates collaborated with a group of incredible artists on the project, including Jim Lauderdale, Wood Newton, Dana Cooper, Doug and Telisha Williams (Wild Ponies), Irene Kelley, and Shelley Rae Korntved. Set in late nineteenth-century Arkansas, the original novel inspired these artists to mine their own history and life experience. This album hammers home the importance of storytelling through our country’s oral traditions, reimagined through the spirit of Fred Starr’s original book and now musically brought to life by his grandson's unmistakable and emotional vocal performance.

“It is like watching a movie,” says Oates. "The cinematic aural landscape visually evokes a classic tale of tragedy, love gone wrong and an exploration of human nature and all its flaws."

The re-publishing of the book along with the compilation of 11 songs has an anticipated release of February 2020. The book will contain a forward with creative input from the songwriters involved, including interviews with each songwriter featuring insights into process and inspiration from the book.

Press Photos & SINGLE/Album Covers

Photos by Jason Denton

Press Contact

Olivia Baker | Richlynn Group

632 Fogg St, Suite 1 | Nashville TN 37203 | 615-970-7474
olivia@richlynngroup.com | richlynngroup.com

 

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Americana songwriter David Starr walks into a room and everything falls still. You genuinely want to hear what he has to say. And then he sings… It is like being connected to nature and society all at once.
— Jordan Knight, Go See Live Music