Watch the new video for "She Might Look My Way," from The dB's' Chris Stamey

The dB's' 1984 album Like This—which features "Amplifier," a breakup song whose sad lyrics are incongruously set to catchy, upbeat music—was one of my music staples in high school and college, so I'm more than thrilled to hear that The dB's' Chris Stamey recently released a single that will be featured on his new solo album (set to drop on July 7, 2023). 

Take a listen to Stamey's cover of "She Might Look My Way," which was written by Tommy Hoehn and Alex Chilton. On his YouTube page, Stamey explains why he chose to include this song on his new album, …The Great Escape

When I was a kid, I fell in love with the sound of records. I was 17 in 1972 when I got a copy of #1 Record by Big Star, and I thought it had about the most magical sound of them all. So I decided one summer afternoon that, hey, I'd just call the studio listed on the back and ask them how they did it! The woman who answered the phone at Ardent in Memphis put me on hold, and I can only imagine now that some laughter ensued all round the office at the audacity and absurdity of my question! But they put engineer/producer Terry Manning on the line, and lo and behold, as my head reeled, he ever so kindly took the time to tell teenage me all about the nitty gritty, the mics and guitars and amps and gizmos. 

I had no idea then that Terry had worked on Led Zep III, classic Staples Singers tracks, and was soon to helm ZZ Top megahits. I just knew he was one of the Ardent wizards. And I was so grateful to have him pull the curtain back just a little. 

Decades and many sessions later, meeting at a NYC concert, we picked up the conversation again. Both loving a forgotten song, "She Might Look My Way," that I'd later played regularly at CBGB with Big Star's Alex Chilton—and even recorded with him at Todd Rundgren's studio for Elektra Records, although it was never released by the label. At that point I'd already started a bare-bones studio version of it myself, with Mitch Easter on drums, so I handed the tapes off to Terry. He dialed in his wizardry once again, in the Bahamas, and filled it with that same brand of Memphis magic: harmonies, guitars, Mellotron. It was the very last thing ever mixed at the famous Compass Point Studios, and that, too, seemed kind of magical. I loved it. We even talked about starting a band together then, but geography got in the way. 

So when I was finishing up my new record, …The Great Escape, as a reality check I kept referencing this track, which had also never been released. I finally realized that it belonged in here with the newer tracks, that it was in a way a keystone for the rest. I didn't write it, Alex did that, with Tommy Hoehn. But I'm so pleased to have it on board.

In an interview with Brooklyn Vegan, Stamey describes the video:

The video itself is an homage to the lip-sync video TV appearances Alex and the other Box Tops did in the 60s. Here, it's Alejandro Escovedo who is playing the host of an imaginary late-70s NYC late-night cable-TV show called Rock On. Mitch Easter, who plays drums on the actual recording, is the drummer in the video here. Robert Sledge (bass, Ben Folds Five) and Matt McMichaels (2nd guitar, Mayflies USA) are also in the band here.

Check out Stamey's website for more information about the new album. And if you're in the southern United States in mid-late June, you can see Stamey live:

June 15, Chapel Hill, NC: On the Green at Southern Village 
June 16, Rocky Mount, VA: Harvester Performance Center (w/ the Connells) 
June 17, Charleston, SC: The Riviera Theater (w/ the Connells) 
June 24, Athens, GA: Athfest