Greg Cornell & The Cornell Brothers

Original roots music from Brooklyn. Songs of redemption and hope.

"Cornell visits the deep, looming sense of longing that's often tied to bluegrass or folksy tracks...and steers clear of any cliches."--Connor Feimster, Mind Equals Blown


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The Cornell Brothers will go into the studio in March 2016 at Brooklyn Recording in Columbia Heights (north of Red Hook, west of Carroll Gardens) to record a 10-song album of new songs, written by Greg Cornell (with help from Sarah Johnson, Kurt Olsen and Todd Willison). Cornell Brothers fiddler Adam Moss will produce; Justin Guip, who recorded Levon Helm's last records, as well as work by Bow Thayer and David Bromberg, will engineer and mix. 

The band has been playing seven of the new songs over the past year at their shows; three are brand-spankin' new. The lineup of musicians will also include guest appearances by some of Brooklyn's finest roots musicians. The album will be ready for release in late spring/early summer.

Some of the new songs you will hear:

Liars, Betrayers and Hellhounds: it's a love song! Really. With an upbeat country tempo, about finding true love after many futile attempts.

Broken Wings: Sarah Johnson (the true love) wrote the chorus. A white bird with broken wings comes to rest in a northern lake.... Symbolism!

The Median Song: this song was conceived in Laura Cortese's songwriting class at Miles of Music Camp a couple of years ago; birthed this past year. The class exercise was to take a dictionary, close your eyes, open to a random page, put your finger down, and whatever word it landed on, you had to write a song about. Cornell's word was "median."   It can be done! An uptempo blues.

Come On Home: Kurt Olsen wrote most of the words to this song about a man who just can't stop fighting, and the woman who loves him. A medium paced country waltz.

Trail of Tears: one of the greatest tragedies America ever committed, the story of the forced removal of tribes from the southeast to Oklahoma in the 1830's. From the point of view of a Native American girl, the story is told briefly in the film "Muscle Shoals." (You never know where inspiration will come from.) He wrote the music on a five-string tenor guitar, custom made by master luthier Tracy Cox in Colton, NY.

The Other Side of Sorrow: also conceived in Laura Cortese's class at Miles of Music Camp. Fellow camper Todd Willison came up with the melody on the verses. Some questions are asked: would you fall in love if you knew it would end in sorrow? Would you choose heaven if the path led you through hell? Well! And a line from Henry David Thoreau makes an appearance.