Kishi Bashi Shares Cover of Dolly Parton’s “Early Morning Breeze”

To celebrate Dolly Parton’s birthday today, Kishi Bashi has shared his new cover of “Early Morning Breeze,” from her formative 1971 album Coat Of Many Colors. The cover introduces a subtly transformed sonic palette, including a short violin solo from the string extraordinaire. “I’ve always loved Dolly Parton,” he explains. “I think an artist’s personality plays a part in appreciating their work. I love how she’s always so generous and grounded in this crazy world of show business.”

“Early Morning Breeze” is Kishi Bashi’s first release since his critically acclaimed 2019 album Omoiyari (Joyful Noise), praised by The New York Times, NPR’s All Things Considered, NPR Music (‘First Listen,’ ‘New Music Friday’), Billboard, The New Yorker, Noisey, Smithsonian Magazine, Relix, Paste, Exclaim!, and many more. A record that channels the hard-learned lessons of history by reckoning with the country’s past internment of Japanese-Americans during WWII, Kishi Bashi immersed himself in that period, visiting former prison sites and listening to the stories of survivors, while developing musical concepts along the way. “I didn’t want this project to be about history, but rather the importance of history, and the lessons we can learn,” Kishi Bashi reflects. “I gravitated toward themes of empathy, compassion, and understanding as a way to overcome fear and intolerance. But I had trouble finding an English title for the piece. ‘Omoiyari’ is a Japanese word. It doesn’t necessarily translate as empathy, but it refers to the idea of creating compassion towards other people by thinking about them.”