The Ghost Of Paul Revere. Lauryn Hottinger photo

One of Maine’s best known musical acts is Portland-based holler-folk band Ghost of Paul Revere. From a 2018 appearance on “Conan” to touring around the country over the past few years playing countless shows and festivals, the band continues to gain national footing. Its latest album is called “Good At Losing Everything,” and it’ll be out on Friday.

Ghost of Paul Revere is Griffin Sherry on guitar and vocals, Max Davis on banjo and vocals, Sean McCarthy on bass and vocals, Chuck Gagne on drums and Jackson Kincheloe on harmonica and lap steel.

“Good At Losing Everything” was recorded by Jonathan Wyman at The Halo, mastered by Adam Ayan at Gateway Mastering and co-produced by Jonathan Wyman and Spencer Albee.

As with just about every band on the planet, the pandemic wreaked havoc on the Ghost of Paul Revere, in particular its plans for a spring European tour and what would have been a busy summer schedule of shows here in the U.S. The album, however, was recorded back in January 2019, and the band came to realize that, since the end of the pandemic is unknown, it didn’t make sense to wait for touring to resume to let the world hear it.

The first single is the thunderous “Love At Your Convenience,” which was released on July 8.

“Good at Losing Everything” is a solid, satisfying album full of songs that are bursting with sorrow and heartache conveyed with often contemplative lyrics on a canvas of folk, rock, Americana and country. Bonus points awarded for Sean Morin’s stellar string arrangements.

Cover art of The Ghost of Paul Revere album “Good At Losing Everything” Design by Mike Tallman

First off, a little Ghost 101. McCarthy, Sherry and Davis, all in their early 30s, have known each other their entire lives. Sherry and Davis met when they were 3, and then a year later, McCarthy joined their toddler crew. They all attended preschool, then Eliza Libby Elementary school in Buxton. They’ve been best friends ever since.

In 2011, Sherry had been playing a monthly gig at Dogfish in Portland, and McCarthy and Davis often joined him. This was the beginning of what would become Ghost of Paul Revere. Their debut EP was released in 2012, and the first full-length album was 2014’s “Believe.” Two EPs and another full-length album have followed.

I spoke with both McCarthy and Davis, who happened to have written my two favorite tracks on the album: “Dirigo” and “Diving Bell,” respectively.

McCarthy penned “Dirigo” as a nod to Maine, which the band’s extensive pre-pandemic touring schedule has kept him away from, more than in, over the past few years. “I was just kind of questioning whether that lifestyle was worth it when the people that I really care about besides the guys in the band are thousands of miles away from me, and I’m missing out on these things,” said McCarthy.

But he also made it clear that, despite the song highlighting some of the hard parts of the musician’s life, the repeated lines “onward and upward again” after each chorus are meant as an affirmation that, even when things get tough, it’s best to keep your head up and keep working hard. McCarthy sings “Dirigo” with a classic, country croon and like many Ghost songs, the harmonies are lush and plentiful.

Davis and I dug into “Diving Bell.” It opens with his banjo and the lines, “She breathes out life lost in the shady patch out back/Sways differently now pulled by the weight of recent past/Pretending to watch the seeds she cradled grow/One thousand quiet seconds in the diving bell.”

Like “Delirare,” the other Davis-penned track on the album, “Diving Bell” is about Davis confronting a pivotal decision in his life and what he described as “trying to reconcile with the idea of fate and conscious choice.” Davis found inspiration for the song while listening to an episode of a podcast called The Memory Palace that was about the construction of the Brooklyn Bridge, which began in 1870 and took more than a dozen years to complete.

“I had never thought about how they constructed these monumental things that we take for granted before there was big machinery,” said Davis, who was struck in particular by hearing about immigrant workers being sent to the bottom of the East River to place pillars for the bridge. “It seemed to encapsulate how I was feeling, trying to create structure from such a bizarre standpoint.” Davis also shared that musician Ben Cosgrove played a key role in the song. “He and I worked on it for a long time and put in this incredible melodic structure.”

One other thing to note is that Ghost of Paul Revere launched a page on the crowdfunding platform Patreon about three weeks ago. Fans can join for either $5 or $15 per month and will receive access to exclusive content and things like early ticket sales once touring resumes.

McCarthy explained that, once it became clear that the pandemic had no foreseeable ending, the band realized they needed a way to share content (i.e. new songs and videos), and Patreon was the best option. The band has long admired the platform and some of its users, like Mainer Max Garcia Conover. McCarthy said there’s a bittersweet element to taking that step. “I did not decide to become a musician to put on online videos, so it’s a strange about-face. I’m doing this to perform live in front of friends and family and the community I’ve fostered, and now there’s those screens in between us.”

Here’s hoping that when the pandemic ends, the Ghost of Paul Revere gets back to doing what they do best: performing live. In the meantime, “Good at Losing Everything” should more than tide over their fans.

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