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Death Cab, Son Volt Frontmen Record Kerouac-Inspired Songs


Death Cab for Cutie’s Ben Gibbard and Son Volt’s Jay Farrar are collaborating on a side-project inspired by ’50s Beat writer Jack Kerouac.

The pair met while recording songs for an upcoming Kerouac documentary, One Fast Move or I’m Gone: Kerouac’s Big Sur, which examines the writer’s life in the years after he published On the Road, the dizzying, drug-fueled novel that announced him as the voice of a generation.

Farrar told the Riverfront Times that the collaboration felt natural.

“We both wound up in the studio together, just sort of decided to take a step further and record a whole batch of songs,” he said. “It’s kind of evolved into a real project. I guess there aren’t a whole lot of details about it yet, but it’s in the works, and it could possibly come out in the fall, like around October — which I think is a Jack Kerouac anniversary of sorts.” (Kerouac died Oct. 21, 1969, at the age of 47, from cirrhosis of the liver caused by heavy drinking.)

The documentary also features songs by Tom Waits and hip-hop artist Sage Francis, and Waits and Patti Smith provide commentary on Kerouac’s influence on their artwork and the world at large.

Check out photos from the soundtrack recording sessions here.