Ryan Adams Recruits Garry Shandling, Jeff Garlin For Weird Promo - Rolling Stone
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Ryan Adams’ Music Kills Parakeets in Bizarre LP Promo

Jeff Garlin, Garry Shandling, Don Was and Bob Mould guest in the hilarious album teaser

UPDATE: As Pitchfork points out, Adams has released a second video, titled Zombie, which finds Jeff Garlin discussing the zombie ramifications of listening to Adams’ new album. 

The new Ryan Adams LP, Ryan Adams, isn’t “for the birds.” That lesson is learned the hard way in a bizarre promotional video for the album, which features cameos from Jeff Garlin, Garry Shandling, Don Was and Bob Mould – and a plot wherein Adams’ emotionally heavy music brings an inexplicable death to parakeets.

The three-minute, Funny or Die-esque promo opens with Adams’ manager (Shandling) answering a hysterical phone call from an Adams fan (Garlin) whose parakeet has been slayed by the unexpected weight of the new album. This prompts the manager to ring up a mysterious label executive (Was, channeling his inner creepy-businessman-from-a-David-Lynch-movie), who demands that Adams “make a new album that doesn’t kill anything.” The climax flashes back eight months to Adams’ recording studio, where the singer records a series of hilariously grunty vocals. 

Ryan Adams, the singer-songwriter’s 13th album, is out on Tuesday via Pax-Am Records. In the meantime, fans can stream the entire LP over at NPR. Adams talked to Rolling Stone back in July about the 11-track release, which was inspired by the Smiths, the Velvet Underground and his battles with an inner ear disorder called Ménière’s disease.

Before recording the LP, Adams previously spent $100,000 recording a full, stripped-down album with producer Glyn Johns. After scrapping those recordings, Adams recruited bass-playing friend Tal Wilkenfeld and a local drummer and started work at the frontman’s newly built Pax Am studio in Los Angeles. “I was like, ‘I’ll go in with a couple bros at seven o’clock and just jam,” Adams told Rolling Stone. “We would, like, smoke a bowl and drink some tea – and the words came free-flowing out of me. It gives me chills just talking about it.”

Adams kicks off an eight-week tour tonight, September 8th, at Washington D.C.’s 9:30 Club. 

In This Article: Ryan Adams


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