Chatterbox: Maple & Beech talk ‘Sand Sing’ & unearthing a skeleton.

Maple & Beech are a polished pop pair based in Minneapolis. Their new single ‘Sand Sing’ is collaboration at its finest, having pulled in talented friends to provide a plethora of instrumental texture; violin, trumpet, trombone and saxophone to name a few. This crowdsourced arrangement gives the new record a real pulse, an undeniable energy that will have you bopping.

Hey, tell us a bit about yourself.

Maple & Beech is me, Tyler Tholl, and my best friend Pete James Johnson. We’ve played music together since we were kids and released our first full-length album, RUNDAWDAW, earlier this year. Though we say that the project is a duo, the truth is that a lot of friends and family help us record and play live. The music is drum-heavy, synthy pop with horns, strings, and noise. We both live in Minnesota and enjoy badminton.

Where did the new single come from?

“Sand Sing” is an odd tune for us. I wrote most of the chords and melody in 2009 but the lyrics were really, really bad so I ditched it. For whatever reason, I unearthed the skeleton of this song a couple of months ago, reimagined the arrangement, and rewrote the words. It came together really quickly this time around. The song is a caricature of a gross ego with a stage; a satirical take on dishonesty. Its title comes from imagining the phenomenon of singing sand as personified music without meaning… as if it’s this empty sound that demands attention without communicating anything beyond its own noise.


Is there more content in the pipeline?

There are a couple of albums that I helped produce that will come out soon, one by Brian Just and the other by Mitchell Adam Johnson. They’re both fantastic Minneapolis-based songwriters that write music that is very different from Maple & Beech, so that makes it a lot of fun for me. I’m always working on new music and so is Pete, though it’ll probably be awhile before there’s a new Maple & Beech album.

What’s on the horizon for you?

We release “Sand Sing” on cassette in October. Other than that: shows, Minnesota winter, Aunt Theresa’s chocolate cake, and stay-at-home-dadding.


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