Anyone familiar with the Minnesota bluegrass band Trampled by Turtles might well be shocked by Dead Man Winter, frontman Dave Simonett’s solo alter ego. In contrast to Trampled by Turtles' overdrive bluegrass raveups, Dead Man Winter’s upcoming album Furnace (independently released by GNDWIRE Records and Thirty Tigers) is lilting, stately roots rock of the sort you’d hear on a large-venue bill with Tom Petty.
Upbeat sonics aside, however, the album's subject matter is deadly serious – a wrenching separation and divorce, in the face of which Simonett took the Bon Iver route of cold-weather introspection. He holed up in a cabin in Minnesota for some purging by way of therapeutic songwriting, and one of the songs he emerged with was "Red Wing Blue Wing." It finds Simonett taking stock of himself and admitting, "I'm full of charm/I'm full of whiskey/And I'm full of shit/Most of the time."
"'Red Wing Blue Wing' is a small, incomplete snapshot of a year spent living in a small town in southern Minnesota," Simonett says. "It's kind of a look at the romanticism of small town life versus the reality of inserting oneself into a fairly settled-in community that isn't really used to outsiders, so to speak. It has a happy ending, though. By the end of my time there, I genuinely felt like a citizen and had grown to enjoy the place."
Furnace will be released January 27th, after which Simonett (as Dead Man Winter) will be on the road through April.
February 10 – Minneapolis, MN @ First Ave
February 17 – Fargo, ND @ The Aquarium
February 18 – Duluth, MN @ Pizza Luce
February 19 – Madison, WI @ High Noon Saloon
February 21 – Philadelphia, PA @ Boot & Saddle
February 23 – Boston, MA @ The Sinclair
February 24 – New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom
February 25 – Washington, DC @ The Hamilton
February 26 – Charleston, WV @ Mountain Stage
March 9 – Menasha, WI @ Source Public House
March 10 – Milwaukee, WI @ Pabst Theatre
March 11 – Chicago, IL @ Schubas
March 20 – Bozeman, MT @ The Filling Station
March 21 – Missoula, MT @ Top Hat
March 23 – Seattle, WA @ Tractor Tavern
March 25 – Portland, OR @ Aladdin
March 27 – Arcata, CA @ Humbrews
March 28 – San Francisco, CA @ Slim’s
March 29 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Echo
March 30 – San Diego, CA @ Soda Bar
March 31 – Phoenix, AZ @ Crescent Ballroom
April 1 – Santa Fe, NM @ The Bridge
April 2 – Colorado Springs, CO @ Ivywild
April 3 – Denver, CO @ Bluebird Theater