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Block Ice & Propane

by Erik Friedlander

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King Rig 05:58
Dream Song 06:33
Road Weary 04:14
Night White 09:01
Rushmore 09:55
Cold Chicken 01:09
Yakima 08:59


Every summer my parents would pack us up for months of camping. My father is a photographer, and he’d plan these trips around his work, various teaching jobs and photo shoots, all across the U.S. Our camper was a thin shelled box sitting on top of a 1966 Chevrolet pickup truck. An economy model with a propane gas stove, a sink and a table-- no shower, no fridge. 15 lb. blocks of ice kept the food from rotting. Lukewarm sponge baths from the sink or campground showers did the same for us.

One summer newer RV's appeared on the road-- sleek, silver Airstreams throwing our reflection back at us as they roared past like first class trains. Showers. Refrigerators. Incomprehensible luxury. The era of block ice was drawing to an end, but not for us. Melting cubes swiped from motel ice machines tided us over when we were low.

The stale smell of drowning food. The propane stove my mother was always afraid would leak catastrophically. The hours my sister and I spent reading or counting Mack trucks from the top window. The tongue my father prepared that seemed to gape at us from the roadside picnic table. Cities, campgrounds, parades, outhouses, wild animals, and strange characters suffused in the haze of thousands of hours of highway travel. Writing these pieces put me back in that camper, where time seemed to slow, while outside tiny white signs furiously ticked off the next tenth of a mile.

Many thanks to Scott Solter for his savvy and empathetic ear. Thanks also to John Darnielle, Kio Griffith, Michael Greenberg, Bryce Dessner and Alec Bemis. Special thanks to Dick Connette for his support and ideas.


released July 14, 2007

All Music by Erik Friedlander
Produced by Erik Friedlander & Scott Solter.
Recorded by Scott Solter August 22-23, 2005 in San Fransisco.
Mixed at The Tiny Telephone September 7, 2005.
Mastered by Steve Berson at Total Sonic Media.
All live processing by Scott Solter.
Only Dream Song contains overdubs.

Erik Friedlander: cello, tuning forks.


Yakima (6:46)
Dream Song (10:01)
Airstream Envy (5:30)
Road Weary (3:07)
Night White (6:35)
Block Ice & Propane (5:31)
Rushmore (7:28)
Rusting In Honeysuckle (title from Cormac McCarthy) (3:14)
Cold Chicken (1:04)
King Rig (4:41)
Pressure Cooking (4:20)
Lee Av (8:51)


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Erik Friedlander New York, New York

Cellist Erik Friedlander is a prolific solo artist, bandleader and film composer. Having been a sought after studio musician and improviser in New York’s downtown music scene for years, Friedlander has recently become well known for his work scoring film and television. He most recently scored the film "Baby Ruby" by first time director Bess Wohl appearing now on Hulu. ... more

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