Sue Garner has been making music for more than twenty years, her first band was the arty new wave outfit Vietnam who hailed from Athens, Georgia. After moving to New York she played in a number of bands that have helped to define that cities musical landscape. The Last Round Up, The Shams, Fish and Roses and Run On are all Garner affiliated projects, which have been diverse in sound helping to mold her vision into one that is clearly unique.
Shadyside marks Sue's third solo offering after 1998's To Run More Smoothly and 2000's Still, and after witnessing a poetry reading by Fay Hart, Sue was compelled to attempt to set some of her poems to music. Sue commenced recording at her home studio, Mule Yard, and along with husband Rick Brown traveled to Chicago recording with Jim O'Rourke at his home studio. However after laying down a number of tracks the tragic events of last fall changed virtually everything including the direction of the record. It went from a series of poems set to music to something more personal in nature and in the process became Sue's finest work to date.
Except for two songs recorded at Jim's, Shadyside was recorded and mixed entirely at Mule Yard with the help of noted producer JD Foster (Marc Ribot, Richard Buckner, Dwight Yoakam). JD offered Sue invaluable assistance and input with regards to recording techniques. He also makes an appearance on a few tracks, as do Doug Wieselman of Shudder to Think, Marc Ribot of Tom Waits/Elvis Costello fame, James McNew of Yo La Tengo, Rick Brown ex-Run On/Fish and Roses and noted New York Jazz musician Ted Reichman. However Shadyside remains a Sue Garner affair as she handles a majority of the playing and all of the singing on the record. Beyond the Hart/Garner collaborations are four new Sue compositions, a Michael Hurley cover, and collaborations with former Sham Amanda Uprichard and Rick Brown. Calling on the inspiration of friends and heroes along with Sue's own emotions makes Shadyside all at once an intimate and grand affair.