Amber Coffman Talks Split From Dirty Projectors, Dave Longstreth

"I consider it a loss to no longer be involved with Dirty Projectors, but ultimately walking away was the only healthy choice for me"

Former Dirty Projectors member Amber Coffman discussed her split from the band and breakup with leader Dave Longstreth. Credit: Noam Galai/Getty

Former Dirty Projectors member Amber Coffman discussed her split from the band and breakup with its leader Dave Longstreth, Stereogum reports. "I consider it a loss to no longer be involved with Dirty Projectors, but ultimately walking away was the only healthy choice for me," Coffman said in a statement.

Coffman shared the statement as she prepares to release her debut solo album, City of No Reply, which Longstreth worked on as a writer and producer. However, the LP also arrives in the wake of the Dirty Projectors' new self-titled album, which Coffman did not appear on and which Longstreth referred to as a breakup album. Coffman said she learned that Longstreth planned to release a new Dirty Projectors album without her last September. 

"It was never my intention or wish to leave the band or end my friendship with Dave," she said. "It was a surprise to me to learn last September about his album plans, the content, timing, use of the band name, etc."

Coffman said she and Longstreth split in 2012 after a six-year relationship, but patched things up and began working on music again in 2014. The pair recorded City of No Reply at Longstreth's studio in 2015, but as the musician wrote, "things took an unfortunate downturn around the completion of my record, at which time we stopped speaking."

Coffman has yet to announce a release date for City of No Reply. Last fall, she shared the album's first single, "All to Myself."

In an interview with Rolling Stone, Longstreth spoke about splitting with Coffman and how working with Kanye West and Solange helped him embrace making a more personal record. "If you had asked me at the time, I felt very uncertain about where to go with music," Longstreth said. "I didn't have answers for that. It was really helpful for me to work in a different kind of capacity than I ever had before. Working as a producer, an arranger and in some cases as a writer for some other people, gave me a super different perspective. But at that same time I was doing the Kanye stuff and working on the Solange album, I would go back to the music I was making. It was probably early sketches and versions of the music that became this record."

Amber Coffman Statement About Dirty Projectors, Dave Longstreth
Dave and I indeed broke up in the summer of 2012, after a 6 year relationship. After a long tumultuous period, we managed to patch things up enough to leave the future open, and in 2014 we gave working together on my music a test run. Eventually I brought him on in a greater capacity as a producer, he moved to LA and we recorded my album at his newly built studio in 2015. All went considerably well, but things took an unfortunate downturn around the completion of my record, at which time we stopped speaking.

It was never my intention or wish to leave the band or end my friendship with Dave. It was a surprise to me to learn last September about his album plans, the content, timing, use of the band name, etc… I consider it a loss to no longer be involved with Dirty Projectors, but ultimately walking away was the only healthy choice for me.

I'm really proud of the album I made and my hope is that people will listen to it on its own terms. I've waited a long time to share it and I'm looking forward to it.