I met Guy Capecelatro III some time around 1994, when he played guitar and wrote songs for a New Hampshire band called *Toast*.
My friend Ron turned me on to Toast, and in-between begging them to release a CD on Dromedary, I convinced them to drive down to New Jersey and play a Dromedary night at the old Love Sexy club in Hoboken. All I really remember about the night was the amazing tour van that Toast had, a regular van with a metal cage welded inside and loft beds built in, making it A) impossible to break in and steal the band’s gear, and B) comfortable for sleeping.
Anyway, Toast eventually broke up, leaving behind a nice catalog of 7″s and lots of home recordings done with 4-track cassette recorders that never saw the light of day. We lost touch.
When Dromedary revived in 2010, we reissued the album _Flying Suit_ by The Mommyheads, and one of the first people to buy one was Guy Capcelatro III. With such a unique name, I recognized him right away and sent him an email, and after a bit of back and forth, he sent me a _stack_ of CDs filled with music he’d recorded over the years. After Toast’s breakup, Guy just continued writing. He forged relationships with many songwriters and musicians over the years, and collaborated on a ton of projects, releasing many of them under his own labels, but also content to leave much of it unreleased. Guy writes for his own enjoyment, and so do his friends.
One of the CDs he sent really stood out to me. It was titled _North For The Winter,_ and the songs had a depth and a maturity to them that was unlike anything I’d ever released on Dromedary. The music was recorded in 2005, in an old gymnasium that Guy was able to access for a few days. He invited literally dozens of friends to participate, and the result was a huge collection of songs, from which he chose the 18 tracks that wound up on the album. Thirty musicians participated in those 18 songs. We released it in late February of 2012, a perfect album of sad winter songs.
Nothing Dromedary releases would qualify as “successful” using the definitions most people use when evaluating music, or indie labels. We’ve never been one of the hip labels people talk about. We exist mostly on the periphery of underground music, documenting music most people have never heard, and that most are unlikely to ever hear, and that’s fine. But this record was beautiful, and people fell in love with it. Nothing we’ve ever released has resonated with people like this album. I’ve actually had folks _thank_ me for putting it out, because it was so meaningful to them. It was my privilege to be involved in a small way.
Early this year, it struck me that we were approaching the ten-year anniversary of the release of _North for the Winter_, and that we should commemorate that somehow, if only to remind people of what an excellent record it was, and maybe introduce it to a few new ears. So I emailed Guy and asked him if perhaps he had a song finished from those sessions that we could release as a single, as a way of reminding people about the beauty of the record with a new bonus track.
Guy, the most prolific musician I’ve ever met, responded with _19_ songs – an entire full-length album. Not only that, but he emailed basic tracks – mostly just acoustic guitar, voice and drums – around to his friends, who quickly added and embellished and fleshed out the structure of these songs. The result is a fully-formed album, originally forged in that gymnasium back in 2005, with nearly two decades of wisdom and experience baked in before another layer of instrumentation was laid upon the originals. An album nearly two decades in the making, an album that speaks to Guy’s many friendships and musical collaborations. He even went to the original _North for the Winter_ cover artist, Jarid del Deo, for the art for the new collection.
So, to celebrate the tenth anniversary of _North for the Winter_, we’ll be releasing _Heading North Again_, sort of a sequel and yet also a companion to one of our favorite collections of songs. We’ll be releasing it on CD and digital download in late April, and I do hope you enjoy it the way I’ve come to enjoy all of Guy’s music.