Local musician releases CD that’s ‘for the birds’

West Milford. Local musician Stephanie Seymour’s new avian-themed CD takes a bird’s eye view of nature and the passage of time.

Aug 13 2019 | 11:40 AM

A musician for most of her life, Stephanie Seymour, 53, of Ringwood, has a new CD out that combines her love of music with the joy she has found in recent years’ bird watching.

“I thought ‘I’m going to mix my two passions, music and birds,’” Seymour said. “We’re going to do an album.’”

The CD, “There Are Birds,” started out when Seymour heard one of the tracks, fully formed, inside her head.

The track, “Ruby-crowned Kinglet,” came to her completed in her mind in 2018, with the different instruments correctly in place and lyrics ready to go.

“I heard the song in my head,” she said.

Seymour said it took her about three months to get all 12 tracks figured out, and then a good amount of time working through the production process with her husband, Bob Perry.

That part of things was a bit difficult as she tried to translate what she was hearing inside her mind to Perry in order to get the demos done and then out to the band members that would be performing with them on the CD.

Perry’s production company, Royal Greatness Music, published the album, which is now available online at ThereAreBirds.com.

Seymour performs lead and backup vocals as well as percussion on the album.

A MUSICAL LIFE

Seymour has spent the majority of her life in the music industry, both performing and promoting acts for various studios.

“I started playing drums when I was 15 years old,” Seymour said. “Everyone in my family played drums. I was kind of drawn to it. It’s in my blood.”

After seeing one of her idols, Gina Shock from the Go-Go’s band in the 1980s, perform with The Police in 1982, Seymour pursued becoming a drummer.

At 23, she joined the all-female band called the Aquanettas, based in New York City.

The band’s debut album, “Love With The Proper Stranger,” was released through Nettwerk/IRS records in 1990, and she toured with the band throughout the nation for two months.

In 1995, she joined the band Psychic Penguin, where she further developed her vocal skills, according to her web page.

She also was the lead singer of her own band, Birdy, in 1998 releasing two albums under the cooperative Cropduster Records label.

In between performing, Seymour said that she worked in the industry as a promoter and helped make videos for other bands.

She also met her future husband, Perry.

After marrying, the couple moved from the city to New Jersey where she discovered her second passion, bird watching.

THE RIGHT MIX

Seymour initially moved away from performing around 2011 and “phased” into watching birds more.

She said she thought the transition would close the door on her music career, and move her to another area of interest.

That was not to be, however, when Seymour lost a friend and fellow musician from Psychic Penguin about three years ago and was asked to sing during a tribute to him.

“I was terribly terrified, but I could not pass it up,” she said. “It lead to a whole new group of people (in music).”

She began singing in bands again.

Then, one day, the songs and music from the album started playing in her head.

“I never expected to put out another album,” she said.

In the biography on the website, Seymour said watching birds and being in the natural world has helped her through the rough times and restores “peace and calm” to her soul.

Seymour said the album is more a “labor of love” than something to further her music career, and she would not be touring to promote it.

Instead, Seymour said the album is a nod to the birding community, who has been very supportive of the project.

“I love birds. I love the birding community,” she said. “I want to communicate that with the album.”

“I started playing drums when I was 15 years old. Everyone in my family played drums. I was kind of drawn to it. It’s in my blood.” - Stephanie Seymour