The Hold Steady's Craig Finn has been telling the story on his recent solo tour of watching the Twin Towers fall September 11, 2001 from the rooftop of his friend Chris Newmyer. The story has a lesson — it's OK to not always do as you're told. "Newmyer's Roof," is just one of the tales we'll hear on a new album from Craig Finn, called Faith In The Future. Its release date: September 11, 2015.
Craig Finn wrote us a note explaining how the threads that run through the song came together:
I moved to NYC on September 15, 2000.
Just less than a year later came the terrible events of September 11, 2001. I was working at an office in Union Square and my friend and boss Chris Newmyer suggested we come to his apartment on 2nd Avenue in the East Village. We could see the towers from the roof he said.
We went up there and saw the towers burn and then collapse. At some point he suggested we get some beer. I didn't know what to feel that day, most of us had no emotion to access. So we got some beer, and drank them while watching the World Trade Center go down. It sounds detached now, but at the time it made sense on a day when nothing else made sense. I spent some years after that in darkness.
There was a girl in the 33rd floor of one of the towers that was a receptionist at an investment bank. She went to work that day and when the plane hit they asked her to stay where she was. They said it was safest. She decided against that and walked out of the towers and, like the rest of us, did her best to get on with her life.
Some years later I went to a birthday party. I talked to this girl. We talked all night. We fell in love and are still together. I came out of the darkness. I'm glad she didn't do what they told her to do.
"Newmyer's Roof" isn't about this exactly. It's a song about believing that something better is coming. It's a song about light after darkness. It's about Faith in the Future.
Faith In The Future was produced by Josh Kaufman, known for his music project Rocketship Park and working with Dawn Landes, Josh Ritter and The National. These tunes took on life in Woodstock, New York's cozy The IsOkOn recording studio. And the songs are less grand than you might find on a record by The Hold Steady, much smaller slices of life. The album is coming out on Partisan records and can be ordered now through Pledge Music to get immediate access to an EP which includes "Newmyer's Roof and and four non-album b-sides free.