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Show Up Early To The Party With Andy Shauf

Andy Shauf's latest album is <em>The Party</em>.
Colin Medley
Courtesy of the artist
Andy Shauf's latest album is The Party.

When you grow up on the prairies of Saskatchewan, you learn how to do a lot of things on your own. At least, that's how life went for Andy Shauf. So when it came time to record his new album, The Party, he decided to play almost all the instruments himself.

The album is a collection of vignettes and character studies, full of the kind of observations you might derive from spending a night out, people-watching. One song, "Early To The Party," follows a young woman who is trying to navigate the awkwardness of showing up before anyone else.

"The girl's name is Sherry," he explains. "She's meeting someone there, and he's not there, and she's kind of just trying to make conversation."

Shauf says he wrote Sherry's story from a personal place: "I can definitely identify with being really awkward," he says, "and trying to talk to someone, and them being like, 'Why are you even here right now?'"

Weekend Edition Saturday asked Shauf to take the song apart — both its themes and its arrangement. You can hear more at the audio link.

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