Musician Jeff Engholm and his band Collective Unconscious will perform at 8 p.m. Saturday at Coco Moon in downtown Brainerd.
Engholm has played Danny Zuko in "Grease" and Judas in "Jesus Christ Superstar" with the Hole in the Day Players in Little Falls. He has performed with the area theatre troupe Impart Players, as well as with the regional jazz ensemble George Maurer Group and as a part of a folk duo called "Too Guise."
Since February of last year, Engholm has been organizing "Hunny Nut Studios" (www.hunnynutstudios.com), and there recorded the 12-song debut album "Summit Climb" over the last six months.
"It was a journey," said Engholm, "a musical, technical, spiritual journey."
The idea for the album came about three years ago, while Engholm was working at Little Falls radio station KFML.
"I worked Sunday nights doing preprogrammed shows before they were fully automated, and all I had to do was push a button once in a while. So in between I started experimenting with an old 2-track reel-to-reel tape recorder. In fact, the first thing you hear on the album was recorded at KFML. I included part of this 'lo-fi' recording to convey the humble beginnings where this all began."
"Summit Climb" is probably closest to folk in genre, although the complicated chord structures, rhythms and extensive vocal harmonies give it aspects of jazz and even world music.
"It's a combination of everything I've ever encountered, musically and otherwise. There's definitely something for everyone," Engholm said. "I even play trombone."
The record features several regional musicians, including George Maurer, Muggsy Lauer, Scott Chabot (all of the George Maurer Group), Al Asmus on flute and saxophone, drummer Scott Stebbing, Dean Severson on lap steel guitar, Nathan "Nature" Nesje (Minneapolis), and the Sartell High School Concert Choir, which Engholm co-conducts.
"I'm a strong believer in the power of bringing people together to create something larger than themselves," he said.
This attitude is also reflected in the band put together to support the album, "Collective Unconscious." It includes George Maurer, Aaron-Keith Stewart, Scott Chabot and features the vocal talents of Nature Nesje & Muggsy Lauer.
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