Solidarity with Standing Rock

Lee Bob & The Truth are returning to San Francisco this week, taking the stage at Elbo Room on Thursday just before embarking on a new recording adventure for their third album.

New music has been on Lee Bob’s mind as of late. In November the group released an original song for Solidarity with Standing Rock, a ten-track compilation dedicated to the water protectors at Standing Rock.

The album, which is available for free on Bandcamp, features a range of independent artists who are working in support of Standing Rock. Lee Bob had just returned from a visit, taking supplies and helping with winterization for the camps, when I caught up with him on the compilation and his band’s new music plans.

The collection is not only a tribute to the people of Standing Rock but also to his beloved friend, Brianna. Lee Bob shared, “I first reached out to Brianna Lea Pruett’s sister Keely Doran

[to get the ball rolling]. Brianna was a powerful local voice — engaged in music, art, social justice, and environmental issues. She passed away a little over a year ago and it is hard to express all the ways she impacted and inspired a very wide community of people. The music on this compilation is only a tiny example of that.”

About the movement that fueled the album, he said: “At Standing Rock, I witnessed the most courageous and inspiring gathering of people I have ever seen. The elders, the International Indigenous Youth Council, the water protectors preparing for daily action, the people working tirelessly in the kitchens, the medics being targeted on the front line, the self-organized construction teams preparing non-stop for winter. All of these people need our support. The songs [we recorded] are prayerful and serve as a cultural companion to the spirit that I and many of us have felt in the camps.”

The album features original compositions from Brianna, Goodshield Aguilar, and Marca Cassity, as well as a song called “We are Coming” from Santa Cruz Gospel Choir, which is adapted from two traditional Lakota songs.

Lee Bob & The Truth come to Elbo Room this week after spending most of the year touring with festivals around the country. Fans can expect new songs and a set filled with the band’s signature electrified Americana jams. A few hours after the show, the band will head over to Panoramic House in Stinson Beach to begin recording their new album. Lee Bob said of the recording session, “The studio is equipped for us to stay for six days, and really dig in and knock out a whole record. We’ve all been spread out across various projects this fall. Steve Wyreman playing with Richard Ashcroft and Josh Lippi playing with K.Flay. So we are looking forward to camping out and capturing a whole new vibe.”

Lee Bob & The Truth, The Ha, Stubborn Son
Elbo Room
December 15, 2016
9pm, $8