Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

The Lumineers at Maine Savings Amphitheater

August 16, 2023 @ 7:15 PM - 11:00 PM

On sale 03/10 at 10:00 AM

Show Time : 7:15 PM (ET)

Door Time : 6:45 PM (ET)

Maine Savings Amphitheater

The Lumineers – Wednesday, August 16

The circumstances surrounding the creation of The Lumineers’ fourth album, BRIGHTSIDE (out
January 14), were unlike anything Wesley Schultz and Jeremiah Fraites had previously
experienced in their nearly two decades of making music together. They were five months into a
projected two-year tour behind their 2019 album, III, with no plans to start work on another LP,
when the pandemic forced them off the road in March 2020. That gut punch occurred as Fraites
was preparing to relocate from Denver to his wife’s hometown in Italy, where COVID-19 was
running rampant. Suddenly, everything was up in the air. But finding themselves with time on
their hands, they figured they might as well make use of it. Each wound up recording a solo
album—“accidentally,” Schultz jokes—and those spontaneous side trips inspired them to flip the
script on their collaborative creative process.
With time on his hands, Fraites, who’d been storing up pieces of music for years, composed

three instrumental songs for the Calm app and wound up recording an album of piano

instrumentals, which he would release as Piano Piano. In July, he and Schultz started working

on new material together, continuing into September, when Fraites moved to Italy. At that point,

Schultz headed to the Catskills, where the group’s producer Simone Felice and co-

producer/engineer/mixer David Baron lived and worked. There, they spontaneously proceeded

to record a batch of stripped-back covers of songs from, among other favorites, Dylan, Warren

Zevon and the Blue Nile; he would title the project Vignettes. Two months later, Fraites returned

to Denver, and they resumed working on the songs that would comprise BRIGHTSIDE with

renewed energy and perspective.

“The way we did Vignettes was so different from how I was making Lumineers records with

Jer,”Schultz recalls. “I was showing up at Simone and David’s studio not really knowing what

we’d be doing that day, just letting things happen. There was no planning or choreography—we

were creating in real time. And that experience seeped into the making of BRIGHTSIDE.

“In our demo sessions for the previous records, Jer and I would typically do anywhere from 10

to 50 versions of each song using Pro Tools; we’d orchestrate it differently, speed it up, slow it

down or change keys in an effort to find the most potent version of the idea. But this time it was

bare-bones. We started demoing in Jer’s basement and didn’t even touch the computer—we

just used my phone to record voice memos on, and that was what we sent to Simone. For me, it

was about wanting to have more curiosity in the studio and not have everything all dialed in. It

felt like a new path.”

Fraites concurs. “As weird as it sounds, I feel like 2020 was the most fertile creative period of

my whole life, for so many reasons,” he says. “I finished the solo instrumental album, and when

Wes and I started working on songs together, I felt alive and switched on, and we worked really

fast. I think we trusted ourselves more. We homed in on things. So when we went into the studio

with Simone, he just had these shitty, very low-fi iPhone recordings that left a lot more to the

imagination than the previous processes. And that was exciting.”

As they got down to business in Fraites’ basement, the absence of premeditation and second-

guessing supercharged their creative process. “Sometimes it’s a kernel of an idea or some

random line that becomes your north star,” Schultz points out. “With ‘BIG SHOT,’ for example,

Jer sent me a demo that had the line, ‘I want to be a big shot, big man,’ something like that.

That was all he had, but I was like, ‘There’s something really compelling here.’ At other times it

was just a feeling. So a lot of it came out of wailing away and getting lost in that and then

recording it on my phone, but then listening back and going, ‘There’s something to this; what’s

happening here?’”

“So a big part of this record was just finding the spirit of each song. Like, with ‘NEVER REALLY

MINE,’ I asked myself, how do I make you feel like you’re having such a loud argument with

your lover that the cops are being called by your neighbors?”

“The beauty of our songwriting relationship,” says Fraites, “is that a couplet I came up with,

‘Love was not designed for time/You were never really mine,’ became the chorus, and then Wes

wrote the rest of the lyrics, and it turned into this amazing song.”

“Making this record was about turning the judgmental part of your brain off and just being like a

kid, but having the skills of someone who’s been playing for 20-plus years,” Schultz explains. “It

was a beautiful combination of innocence mixed with some level of acumen or skill—

reconnecting with that innocent impulse you had when you first decided that you wanted to be a

musician. So that was part of what made this album different from our previous ones. Another

huge part of it was realizing that we had told a lot of stories with our lyrics, whereas with this

one, it became more about trying to communicate a feeling, as opposed to telegraphing exactly

what the song is about. I had to go away from that, and it was really refreshing. So a lot of it

casts a spell—it makes you feel something.”

Liberated from their routine and invigorated by this new/old process of in-the-moment give and

take, Schultz and Fraites headed for Felice and Baron’s Sun Mountain Studios in Boiceville,

N.Y., to begin tracking BRIGHTSIDE in March 2021. Also on hand were two members of the

touring band, bassist/backing vocalist Byron Isaacs and violinist Lauren Jacobson, while Baron

would contribute keys and synths.

On The Lumineers’ two prior albums, Felice and the band would hang pictures and quotes on a

vision board that sat in the control room. When they entered the studio on day one of the

BRIGHTSIDE project, the vision board displayed only a black-and-white photo of Noel and Liam

Gallagher onstage at Knebworth during Oasis’ peak, and beneath it, the producer written a

single word: “FREE.” Clearly, Felice had sensed a newfound energy crackling out of those

iPhone demos, and he was all-in on the partners’ urge to create magic on the spot.

The breakout moment occurred soon thereafter when they tackled “BRIGHTSIDE,” the bones of

which Schultz had come up with pre-pandemic during a tour of Australia. “I was strumming the

riff, which had this shimmering quality and a lot of punch to it, and I said, ‘I don’t know who’s

going to play what, but that riff has to happen in the song.’ Jer was warming up and playing this

strange sort of ‘Don’t Come Around Here No More’ drumbeat.”

Like Schultz, Fraites vividly remembers the moment of ignition and the sensation he felt as it

was happening. “The drums got tuned, and I just started playing a drumbeat that I’d never

played before in my entire life, without putting that much thought into it,” he says. “It felt really

good and it sounded awesome. And I had no idea we were being recorded. David Baron says

that he leapt across the room to hit the space bar on his Pro Tools to start recording the


Back to Schultz. “There was a Gretsch White Falcon like the one Neil Young often played in

the ’70s, and I picked it up as a joke. I said, ‘What if I try this?’ We started playing, and I felt like

I was 15 when I first started playing guitar. I was excited and surprised by the sounds and

hearing this huge-sounding beat.”


NO POSTERS | NO Reentry | NO weapons | NO outside food & beverages
NO Backpacks | Point and Shoot CAMERAS ONLY | NO recorders


An inherent risk of exposure to COVID-19 exists in any public place where people are present. COVID-19 is an extremely contagious disease that can lead to severe illness and death. Senior citizens and guests with underlying medical conditions are especially vulnerable.
By visiting our establishment, you voluntarily assume all risks related to exposure to COVID-19.

CLEAR BAG POLICY | NO Purses over 8″ x 5″ x 2″


August 16, 2023
7:15 PM - 11:00 PM
Event Categories:


Waterfront Concerts
View Organizer Website


Maine Savings Amphitheater
1 Railroad Street
Bangor, ME 04401 United States
+ Google Map
View Venue Website