In a society where youth and the pursuit of youth are of constant primacy, cynical artists often look to collaborate with the latest teenage sensation in the hope of livening up their own profile. In many cases it’s like a musical version of a dodgy anti-ageing injection where the patient is pumped full of virgin plasma, only for the results to prove negligible.
Well, no one can call Sam Genders cynical. The Tunng and Throws co-founder, who releases his solo work under the name Diagrams, has done the opposite in fact. Having fallen in love with the work of 90-year-old poet Dorothy Trogdon, Genders spontaneously wrote a song based on one of her poems, and thought he might as well email her to see if she was keen on working with him.
The affirmative answer soon came back from Trogdon’s home on Orcas Island and, aided by a £2,500 PRS for Music grant, The Dorothy Project was born. “We live in a culture that focuses a lot on youth and it was refreshing to engage with someone of an older generation”, says Genders, while Trogdon’s take on the project is worth quoting in full:
“The poems were out in the world seeking a reader, met Sam Genders who replied with music and a conversation began. Which is how all creation starts. We make nothing new alone. When wind blows through the trees, the leaves rustle. I saw how the wings of Sam’s music would carry my words far beyond my little island and I was glad. Now words and music are friends and shall go forward together.”
The pair are looking for funding to complete the mastering, manufacture and promotion of the finished album. That’s where you come in. Genders has started an Indiegogo campaign to help raise the money, and for as little as a quid you can help the unique collaboration reach the biggest audience possible.
Take a look at the Dorothy Project campaign video and listen to ‘It’s Only Light’, the first track to be released from the sessions, below. Then head over to Indiegogo to donate and keep track of the process.