R. Finn

Collecting Trip

2-8-18: Essential 8 Interview At The Daily Country.

Here's an interview from The Daily Country.

Did you have a musical mentor? If so, who was it and how did they influence you?
Absolutely, Levon Helm and Jim Keltner! When I met Lee I lived on a steady diet of 60’s Rock And Roll. I was on the threshold of folk and the blues, but not quite ready for it. He took me back to the roots of early American music, and I still haven’t recovered. In addition, I was so young and green at the time I lacked not only experience but confidence too. His kindness helped me to believe in myself. He was a great teacher and friend. I met Jim around the same time. Though I’ve written songs since I was a kid, I’d lost the interest and courage to perform them for anyone. He helped me to find my voice. He is a craftsman and a true genius. I felt like I improved in every category just by being around him. 

What’s the story behind your album’s title? 
I was reading a book on Alan Lomax’s journey’s through the south recording rural music for the Library Of Congress. In it he described his makeshift sessions as “collecting trips”. I love those old recordings, and am so grateful they exist. Anyway, we were in mastering and I still had no title for the project, or the album. I took Jim, “Mikey” Piersante (the mix engineer), and Gavin Lurssen (the mastering engineer) out to eat to celebrate the record being done. They were trying to help me find a name. Finally, Gavin just asked.  “If you had to pick two words to describe this material what would it be?” I said, “I don’t know, a - collecting- trip - I guess “ They all said. “Huh?!” I explained my reasoning. Then they all agreed “there’s your title!”.  Good things happen over food and wine!

Where do you draw inspiration from when writing? Books, Movies, personal experience, other musicians?When/where do you do your best writing? 
I’m constantly trying to fill my mind with new ideas, and stay engaged in the world around me. But the majority of my process is really just waiting. Waiting for an idea worth mining. Then hoping you can finish it before you get bored with it or another takes it’s place. 

Do you write about real things that have happened to you or are you a storyteller? Which is easier? 
This album is mostly true stories, and world view songs. I hope to mix more fiction, and stories into the next one. It’s not always easy for me, but I do admire a songwriter who can tell a good yarn. There’s been some great one’s, too many to list. “Frankie And Johnny” , “Long Black Veil” ,“Pancho and Lefty, “Nature Boy” , come to mind…

Have you met any of your heroes? If so, how did it go? 
I’ve been so fortunate to get to meet most of my heroes.  I did meet Bob Dylan once. I said , “God bless you Bob” . He said, “Thank You”. I think he appreciated it. Seemed like a better idea than asking for selfie….

What are your “must have” albums for the road? 
The Allman Brothers Band - Live At Fillmore East. Cuz’ their songs are long, and usually about the road. Or anything from Howlin’ Wolf. 

What’s the best advice you have ever gotten from another musician? 
Imitate before you can originate, and don’t use a click track.

What’s the best advice to give to a musician just starting out? 
Don’t use a click track.


1-18-18 Mother Church Pew Previews Collecting Trip

"With haunting yet hopeful arrangements and heart-wrenchingly poignant lyrics, R. Finn Music has put his kickstand down in the midst of the vast Americana landscape to create a bar-raising deep dive into the best attributes of the genre on his forthcoming album. " Mother Church Pew



Here’s a chance to preview my album before it comes out in the coming days. I hope you enjoy our labor of love! It was certainly laborious, and I certainly enjoyed making it. I wanted to make a truthful record, with serving the musical muse my only compass. At the very least I did that. I can promise you. It’s no Ray Charles record. But it’s the best album I can make for where I’m at now. We’ll see where we go from here. Perhaps, what I enjoyed most about it, is to get to continue to be a student of a craft I enjoy so much. I, of course, have to thank my partner in crime the masterful Jim Keltner for given me the opportunity to sharpen my tools. As well as his co-productive genius, and making the album dance. I wouldn’t have started an album without him, neither would I have finished this one. Beyond that, there were many people who worked hard to get this thing to the finish line. Too many to mention. But if they are on the record it is because I admire them. We get through this life off the kindness and grace of others, and I am happy to be in their company. So in closing, roll up a J with some friends, if that’s your pleasure, and spend 40 minutes with us. Or put it on in your car and go get lost somewhere. However, you choose to enjoy music. I hope you enjoy this one.

Your Pal,



1-5-18 : Notes From Left Of The Dial , PopDust Release Radar.

A nice write up from left of the dial here at nooga.com

On his new single, “Quiet House,” Finn radiates a bucolic intimacy, a warmth that extends outward from the lingering syllables of each line to the comforting melodies that cling to your ears. Acoustic guitars and a gently shuffling percussive gait bend your attention to the effortless way he creates detailed folk worlds from a host of familiar sounds. There’s a definite twang and tangible ache in each moment of the song. The persuasive rustic rhythms latch on to your senses and form a nice little folk cocoon inside your head, a perfect nesting spot for Finn’s compelling use of mandolin and pedal steel shivers. Blending Americana and ancestral folk tendencies, he comes away with a sound both reverential and casually ambitious.



Quiet House Featured On PopDust

This song is a game changer for this week's release radar. Much more acoustic and relaxed than the rest of this week's releases, it was a treat, as much as I love electronic music. My favorite part of this tune are the beautiful vocals and harmonies. The string instrumentation from the guitar to the banjo to the fiddle just make me think of driving through the countryside. Brb planning a road trip.



1-2-18 The Daily Country Announces R. Finn LP!

 (Press Release) - Folk/Americana singer/songwriter R. Finn (aka Chris Rondinella) has officially announced his forthcoming debut LP, Collecting Trip, out 1/19. Co-produced by Jim Keltner (Bob Dylan, Neil Young, John Lennon), the album's first single, "Quiet House," premiered at Glide, who said, "It’s impossible to ignore the song’s rustic, heartfelt tone that is brought to life by Finn’s reflective lyrics and warm harmonies."



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