WXXI AM News

Alan Murphy

Provided

Right now, in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, with no end in sight, Alan Murphy imagines the plight of songwriters as a familiar philosophical question: If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?

“I imagine, especially now, everybody wonders, ‘What am I doing?’” Murphy says. “Not, ‘What’s the value of it?’”

The falling tree, and the songwriters, are making vibrations in the air. It’s your ear that converts those vibrations into sound. And if there’s no one on the receiving end, did the sound even exist…?

The Mighty High and Dry

What is it that Alan Murphy wants from his band, The Mighty High and Dry?

"I'm looking for a churchy Americana vibe," he says, "but we have some stuff that people can dance to, soul, soul and blues."

He wants different voices, so he's co-written songs such as "Little Red Dress" with Zahyia Rolle of the local R&B band Vanishing Sun. And a couple with Vanessa Mangione, one with a "Johnny Cash vibe," Murphy says, and another he describes as "a gospel party song."