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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Monday, Sept. 1, 2014

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"People comment on my very serious expression when I'm holding the computer. I've been telling people I was aiming for deadpan. Got it half right," says Scott.
"People comment on my very serious expression when I'm holding the computer. I've been telling people I was aiming for deadpan. Got it half right," says Scott.

A Wooldridge brother's solo debut

Singer-songwriter Scott Wooldridge has a new single and accompanying video called "Hard to Go Quietly."

I digress, but for me, it's hard to read a press release that begins, "Minneapolis-based singer-songwriter Scott Wooldridge..."

Wooldridge wasn't ours to start with – he moved to Milwaukee from Indiana in the early 1980s with his band at the time, the Squares – and he's long since moved north.

But he still feels like ours. In a sense he is, because he still performs periodically in town with his brother Brian in The Wooldridge Brothers, which has released six CDs.

For "Hard to Go Quietly," Wooldridge worked with mandolinist Sloan Hamilton and guitarist Mike Senkovich, who plays with several Minneapolis bands, including The Humbugs, The Bazillions and Atomic Flea.

The mostly acoustic tune – which Wooldridge says will be on his first solo album next year, and which I find myself playing over and over again – is a song that reflects the vocally partisan age in which we live. But, says Scott, it's not defending the left or the right.

"It's about wanting to express yourself at a time when there are so many voices, so much data, that many people just feel overwhelmed.

"In August I began work on my first solo album and it seemed like it might be good to put out 'Hard to Go Quietly' early, just because it seemed relevant to the election season," he says.

"It was pretty much inspired by political discussions that I've had on Facebook. That theme is part of the video."

Wooldridge made the video himself and though it may not win any cinematography awards, it's a very respectable effort that reflects the song's lyric, starting off with a hamster running in a wheel, red and blue Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Robots duking it out, political rallies and footage of Wooldridge and his fellow musicians working in the studio.

"It's my first time trying something like this," says Scott. "People seem to like it. I get a lot of comments about Fluffy the hamster, of course."

Check out the song and video here.

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