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Papadimas plans trio of releases

Demos Papadimas, a Howland native whose music blends singer-songwriter rock with Greek folk influences, has a busy 2021 planned with three new releases.

There will be a studio album of original material, a live album culled from shows at Cedars West End in Youngstown between 2017 and 2019 and an EP of Greek rembetiko folk songs.

“These three projects all started before COVID hit, so I wouldn’t say they’re a product of the pandemic,” he said. “Essentially, they’re the product of my work throughout 2019-2020. Although I had already scaled back live shows in 2019, when everything shut down last March, I was able to focus all of my energies on these three projects.”

Papadimas and his band — Ralph Rich, drums; Dave Lynn, guitar; Corey Gray, bass; Caitlin Hedge, violin; and new member Adam Murphy (of White Buffalo Woman), guitar — worked on the upcoming releases at Pete Drivere’s Ampreon Recorder in Youngstown.

“Pete has become an invaluable part of the recording process at this point,” Papadimas said. “He’s often the first person I go to with song ideas.”

“Silence Speaks,” the first single from the new album of originals, debuted last week on The Summit FM (90.7 Struthers / 91.3 Akron) and Papadimas released a video for the single that was directed by Chris Rutushin.

“Stylistically, I wouldn’t say the new album is more rock, but it definitely has more electric guitars than earlier records of mine,” Papadimas said. “It’s still singer-songwriter based folk rock. On certain songs, the Greek influence is probably a bit more pronounced — I play bouzouki on half of the new songs — but other songs are bluesier than anything I’ve done. If there’s one noticeable difference, it’s that there’s a lot less of an Americana influence. There isn’t much resembling twang.”

The burst of creativity wasn’t driven by COVID-19, but the projects’ release schedule will be. The plan right now is to put out one in the spring, one in the summer and the third in the fall, but the order hasn’t been determined.

“A lot depends on COVID,” he said. “I’d like to be able to do some gigs. The order might depend on how things are going. Probably the live album will be first. That one’s completely done.”

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