R&B in the Woods

There was a miscommunication on what time we would meet, so I drove through the rural edges of Columbia, Mo. until Brandon Collins finished a rehearsal on the other side of town. The usual lone ranger will be joining a gospel band to play a convention in Los Angeles next weekend so scheduling has been somewhat difficult, but Brandon has been most accommodating.

I’ve been meeting with Brandon for the past two weekends to document the final preparations and hopeful independent release of his solo album, This Little Space, due in late March. On Sunday, we sat down for what was planned to be a 10-minute interview, but what resulted was an hour-long confession of a man who escapes into his art. This was purely to my delight.

Brandon first shared memories of sitting in on his uncle’s basement jam sessions until the early morning. There he encountered an ensemble of characters, some questionable, who planted the seeds of his passion for blues, gospel and soul music. He was also willing to evoke difficult memories of a successful stint in New Orleans that was cut short by Hurricane Katrina.

The following audio clip does not capture the scope of our entire conversation. It rather touches on what his studio means to him and how his escapism is not an ends to itself, but a means for a greater outward connectedness through his music.

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