The band: Lance Pilgrim, guitar (left); Eric Grubbs, drums (center); Jason Hensel, guitar/vocals (right); and Joshua Warr, bass (not pictured).
Things to know about Ashburne Glen
1) This is being written by someone who met Jason Hensel for about 20 minutes while he was in Baltimore, and I have consumed enough wine to have to spell check "Ashburne." I mean, why the hell isn't this in the dictionary already? This is good stuff and deserves to be a Proper Noun. (Jason is a polite guy and wouldn't have it any other way. I'm hoping I don't ruin his ROCKIN CRED by saying he's polite.)
2) What is with the typeface on the Ashburne Glen Web site?
3) While starting this I'm listening to iTunes. It's putting me through some album I got because the One Little Indian podcast convinced me to buy it, the Brazilian Girls, and Howard Jones. How the hell am I qualified to write about music. Okay, I was in a choir and in fact a soloist and could probably still belt out some Dvorak if my life depended on it. Which would only happen if the Soviets won the Cold War, right? But Jason is from Texas. I will tell you this a couple of more times. It's important. Also, we won the Cold War. I think.
4) Shit, Jason, I meant to start this last week. Pressure, ya know? I mean, I may seem all nonchalant via email but I am one stressed chickie lately. Okay folks: Jason convinced a LIBRARIAN to do this. Just so you know most of my day is spent in silence, or should be.
5) Okay I guess I should shut up and listen to the Ashburne Glen. I'm a-listening. Why is this name so English, the guy lives in Texas. Hey this is like the other wistful guitar-sweet jangly stuff I like. I mean when I'm not busting a groove. Even librarians have to chill and listen to the sweet guitar pop. It keeps us from harming patrons or throwing books around to get out our frustrations. I would pull the comparison namecheck thing but see number 2, you don't want me to do that.
6) Jason is a really nice guy and I shouldn't be wasting his time like this. I'm supposed to be writing a band bio but the band used to be just him. He's nice. Good looking, even. (Single girls, pay attention.) I want this music thing to work out for him, of course, and here I am making you read this stupid list. WILL YOU JUST LISTEN TO THE MUSIC ALREADY? Thank you.
7) When I say "the band used to be him," I would be remiss if I failed to mention that Jason has friends who joined up with him. He's been doing this Ashburne Glen thing since 2001 and of course, being the capital fellow that he is (I'm trying to make this appeal to Anglophiles here), he would naturally make fine musical acquaintances along the way. Jason's also done some other in-band stuff with the Last Drop which people say is "Cure-like."Â Blimey, mate, Jason should be setting up in a respectable flat in the UK. I think he takes his musical influences with a cuppa tea, if you know what I mean. (No eyeliner, though, girls--pay attention.) So, the other Ashburne Glennites are Chad Stockslager, Sean Kirkpatrick, and Joe Cripps. I have not met these gentlemen although if they're hanging with Jason I'm certain they are upstanding. Jason didn't tell me how he met these fellows but I don't think court-mandated community service was involved.
8) The website says something about "sleeping with Elliott Smith" and whatever your opinions of ES may be, the dude is dead and JASON IS COMPLETELY ALIVE but not in that scary Frampton Comes Alive way. Listening to the Ashburne Glen will in no way lead to necrophilia but may lead to cuddly behavior with a living someone you quite like. The gender of said person is your own business.
9) Don't make me go to number 10. It's played out, and I'm not even getting paid for this. I mean I think Jason may be throwing me some stickers or something and since I live so freaking far away I'll put them on my car and enjoy confusing the heck out of people. But then maybe they'll listen to the Ashburne Glen and then thank me for making them feel so much better. The "Kinky for Governor" sticker, though, may take more explaining....