The OaKs: My Father’s God
In honor of our fathers past and present today, we are providing a track by one of the friends to the network – Orlando band, The OaKs. Here’s a bit of back story on their previous release, Our Fathers and the Things They Left Behind.
In late 2003, just two years after 9/11, The OaKs’s Ryan Costello sold everything he owned, joined a humanitarian organization and moved to Afghanistan. Costello lived there for two years, working in the Central Afghan mountains with returned refugees, teaching them creative agricultural techniques and becoming fluent in their native language, Farsi. Late at night, while the dust storms blocked out the stars and rattled the windows, he would sit and work out impressions of what he had seen and heard that day on his acoustic guitar.
After returning to the United States, Costello joined back up with his long-time creative and song-writing partner Matthew Antolick, who was drumming full-time in a Moroccan band. Antolick and Costello began working out Costello’s melodic ideas and lyrical concepts, home-recording in Antolick’s apartment what eventually became Our Fathers and the Things They Left Behind. Exploring themes of self-sacrifice and introspection over roots-folk and jazzy melodic layers, Our Fathers… was an original breath of fresh air for independent music.
The release of Our Fathers… drew immediate attention to The OaKs in Orlando’s press and music scene, and the attention quickly went national as Paste magazine featured Costello and The OaKs in their July 2007 cover story “Can Rock Save the World.” The OaKs also partnered with Global Hope Network on the release of Our Fathers…and agreed to donate 50% of the profits from each CD or track download from that album to aid widows and recently-returned refugees from Afghanistan.
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