Michael Minasi

San Gabriel

Artist of the Month - January, 2022



The shimmery pop melodies that adorn the work of James Bookert’s San Gabriel project might not be exactly what you’d expect from the multi-instrumentalist, who’s already been a part of two Austin bands, Whiskey Shivers and Wild Child. Yet here they are, reverb-drenched and metronomic pop gems that bounce around your cortex, many of them assembled  behind the counter of the east Austin liquor store where Bookert spends time when not on the road. “With Shivers,” explains Bookert, “My role was as a writer, singer, and instrumentalist. Generally, someone would bring in a song, and we would flesh it out together, and then eventually head to a studio. [With] San Gabriel, I’ll generally write a song in thirty minutes, [songs] that for some reason, always come to me around 2:30 am. Then the next day, if I’m home, or have time at work, I’ll start recording. I’ve got a couple guitars, a few keyboards, a bunch of guitars, a couple of synths, and a laptop. So I just play them all on the recordings, and build the tracks out like that. I’ve always enjoyed making music in solitude, this is more of a continuation of that. It’s fun, easy, and informal.” Bookert says he was initially releasing these tunes ‘at his leisure’, but there’s a new batch, including the standout singles “Another One” and “Tape Machine”, scheduled for March, with a San Gabriel full-length to follow later this fall. – Jeff McCord

Catch a live version of the project on January 23 at the Far Out Lounge and at High Noon every Friday in February. A new single, “Castles,” comes out January 28. Until then, please enjoy this exclusive performance filmed at the east Austin liquor store where James works.

BxRodfilms – Director
Cassie Coker – Gaffer
Dany Escobar – Audio Engineer
Justin Wilson – Editor/Colorist
Filming Location: J & J Spirits, East Austin