Last summer it was unconfirmed when we heard Harry Shearer, the one who played Derek Smalls in This Is Spinal Tap was recording his debut solo album, Smalls Change. Those rumored details have finally been confirmed and bassist Small’s’ debut solo effort Smalls Change (Meditations Upon Ageing) will arrive on April 13th via Twanky Records/BMG. The record will consist of multiple genres including featured artists such as Peter Frampton, Donald Fagen, Dweezil Zappa, Rick Wakeman, Richard Thompson, Steve Lukather, Joe Satriani, Waddy Wachtel, Michael League, Jeff “Skunk” Baxter, Paul Shaffer, Steve Vai, Larry Carlton, Judith Owen, Jane Lynch and The Hungarian Studio Orchestra.
Smalls describes the album as:
“Halfway between ‘rage against the dying of the light’ and trying to find the light.”
While the fabled bassist’s album is apparently to commemorate his turning 75, we were surprised to hear that Shearer, who you might know better from his work on The Simpsons, is turning 75 this year as well. Regardless, he’s booked a small string of US dates, calling it Lukewarm Water Live: An Adventure in Loud Music.
Check out the dates below:
4/14 New Orleans, LA @ Saenger Theater w/The Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra
6/29 Atlanta, GA @ Atlanta Symphony Hall w/The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra
TBA Washington, DC @ The Kennedy Center w/The National Symphony Orchestra
*Additional details will be announced soon
A description of the album from Smalls himself with description of the tracks and album guests can be seen below the video for the title track.
1. Openture – Derek with The Hungarian Studio Orchestra
The philosophy of this record, expressed in fewer words than I’ve taken to almost describe it.
2. Rock ‘n’ Roll Transplant – Derek with Steve Lukather (guitar, Toto), drum legends Jim Keltner (George Harrison) and Chad Smith (Red Hot Chili Peppers)
Whatever might be ailing you, rock ’n’ roll is the cure. Ask Dr. Derek!
3. Butt Call – Derek with Phil X (guitar, Bon Jovi) and Taylor Hawkins (drums, Foo Fighters)
In one lifetime, the telephone has gone from a miracle to a pain in the arse.
4. Smalls Change – Derek with The Hungarian Studio Orchestra, Judith Owen (vocals) Danny Kortchmar (guitar, Don Henley) and Russ Kunkel (drums, James Taylor)
Why Lukewarm Water is no longer bracketed by Fire and Ice. A nod to what’s past, and a wink to what’s next.
5. Memo To Willie – Derek with Donald Fagen (vocals), Jeff “Skunk” Baxter and Larry Carlton (guitars, Steely Dan) and The Snarky Puppy Horns
An urgent missive to the Honorable Member: continued tumescence, if you please.
6. It Don’t Get Old – Derek with Peter Frampton (guitar, vocals) and Waddy Wachtel (guitar Keith Richards).
Life on the road, an endless series of pointless encounters. What could be better?
7. Complete Faith – Derek with The Hungarian Studio Orchestra
A musical interruption.
8. Faith No More – Derek with The Hungarian Studio Orchestra and Todd Sucherman (drums, Styx)
As I get older, I look back more fondly on all the people I’ve known. Except for Ian.
9. Gimme Some (More) Money – Derek with Paul Shaffer (piano and organ), Waddy Wachtel (guitar) and David Crosby (vocals)
Time and technology change everything, except the need for change.
10. MRI – Derek with Dweezil Zappa (guitars)
Everybody’s going to have one, eventually. It’s just another ride. To hell, but still…
11. Hell Toupee – Derek with The Hungarian Studio Orchestra
Think Satan doesn’t have dark thoughts about his appearance as he ages? Think again.
12. Gummin the Gash – Derek with Steve Vai (guitar), Gregg Bisonnette (drums, Ringo Starr) and Jane Lynch (vocals)
Losing your teeth closes one door, and opens another. A celebration of the meeting of two toothless cavities.
13. She Puts the Bitch in Obituary – Derek with Richard Thompson (guitar) and Jane Lynch (vocals)
A hymn to womanhood in all her splendor.
14. When Men Did Rock – Derek with Michael League (bass), Joe Satriani (guitar), Rick Wakeman (keyboards) and The Hungarian Studio Orchestra