“I don't burn bright. At least I'm Flickering.”
Flickering was on the Grammy ballot in two categories: Best Folk Album, Best Roots Music Performance.
Diving deep into the visual world had a profound effect on Mickelson, liberating him from his past. In many ways Flickering is the record he’s always wanted to make and completes the evolution into the unique, dynamic artist that’s always been inside him. Says Mickelson, “This is the first time I wrote songs that were 100% personal and without any motivation but to make the most expressive record that I could with whomever I wanted and however I envisioned it. This is my first honest record.”
Lyrically, Flickering inhabits the world we all share, revolving around the challenge of existing in an oppressive culture, inundated by our surroundings. Mickelson is singing the stories of those living their lives in contemporary America, as fragmented as it is. Songs about home, family, loss of family, marriage, relationships that are forever and ones that are slowly dying. More so, Mickelson reminds us that we all need to be aware of how we affect those around us both positively and negatively as we navigate through this life.
When the time came to record Flickering it was the distinctive musical community of San Francisco that joined together to help lift him up. It features nearly two dozen guest artists including members of The Family Crest and other leading Bay Area artists. The record was recorded and produced by Mickelson in his home and mixed by Jay Pellicci (The Dodos, Sleater-Kinney, Deerhoof) at Tiny Telephone in SF.
From the opening piano notes Flickering takes listeners on a surprising and moving journey. Perseverance pays off again, and much like Mickelson himself, you might just find yourself somewhat changed by the time you reach your destination.