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by Pan•American

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Mark Nelson is a guitar player, songwriter and producer who lives and works in Evanston Illinois. He releases records as Pan American and as part of the duo Anjou and the trio Labradford. He plays live shows whenever he can.

Artist notes:

Nightbirds is a meditation for lapsteel guitar. It combines brief, looped sections and melodies played in response to the loop beds. The challenge for me is to create something that tells a story and follows a horizontal logic without traditional structure or chord changes. I’ve always tried in my music to simultaneously have an architecture in place – a beginning, middle and end, but still give it the feeling of infinity. Sounds impossible now that I’ve written it down, maybe it is! Nevertheless, this is another offering and tribute to that ideal.

I think the mysteries around how we listen to music and how it affects us emotionally are much more compelling than details of its creation. Hopefully by placing an emphasis on listening we can offer a slight correction to the emphasis often placed on process and personality. How sound and music hit the human heart is such a wondrous enigma – that opening-up that we can feel through music and sound is the whole point of all the work I do. Listening is composition.


released August 21, 2019


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Pan•American Chicago, Illinois


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