A trip to the mall usually results in a new pair of shoes or maybe an Orange Julius and a pretzel. For singer/songwriter Maurice Mattei, a stroll through the Kenwood Towne Centre resulted in his new album, Kenwood Towne Center. “I was walking though there one day in the winter and what I saw initially was Crabtree & Evelyn,” says Mattei over lunch at Sitwell’s in Clifton. “I’m not that familiar with the store, but I really liked the name. It sounded to me like an Elvis Costello song.
And I thought, ‘That would be kind of neat, to write a song called ‘Crabtree & Evelyn.’”
Almost immediately, Mattei was struck with the larger concept; to build an entire album out of songs that are titled after the names of stores at the Kenwood Towne Centre. Mattei wrote “Crabtree & Evelyn” the very next day. Clearly the songs on Kenwood Towne Center are not literally about the stores in question (some of which went out of business before Mattei began recording), but rather were inspired by imagery that occurred to Mattei in the writing phase. The concept lent itself naturally to Mattei’s typical songwriting methodology.
Mattei, The Tempers and Lovely Crash, play a CD release show for Mattei’s new album at The Comet. Read an interview with Mattei here.