IAN BRENNAN: Home
"Music and other forms of art are by far the most effective kind of social-work that exists. A single, nameless one-hit wonder brings more comfort to the world than almost any single psychologist can hope to in a lifetime." --Ian Brennan
Ian Brennan is a GRAMMY-winning producer with three GRAMMY-nominated records (Best World Music- 2011, Best Traditional Folk-2006 and 2007).
Amongst other projects, he traveled to southeast Algeria to record with Touareg rock legends, Tinariwen, for their 2011 release "Tassili" on the Anti- label. He has also produced, Rain Machine, the solo debut of Kyp Malone (TV on the Radio) which was named "one of the 30 best records of the year so far" by SPIN magazine.
In the studio, he has worked with the likes of Flea, Lucinda Williams, David Hidalgo (Los Lobos), Nels Cline (Wilco), DJ Bonebrake and John Doe (X, the Knitters), Corin Tucker (Sleater-Kinney), Bill Frisell, Jonathan Richman, Richard Thompson, and more.
In the field, some of the artists that he has discovered and produced are The Good Ones (Rwanda), Wayo: Trance Percussion Masters (South Sudan), and the Malawi Mouse Boys. All three albums are the first releases internationally outside of their respective countries in the languages of each band, and the Mouse Boys' was named "the year's best gospel album" by Songlines Magazine, UK. The record General Paolino featuring Mama Celina was named one of the “Top 8 African Releases of 2013” by Renegade Magazine. And, in October 2014, IRL Records will release Acholi Machon “Lamwong” (Freedom Fighters).
Brennan also produced Italian superstar, Jovanotti’s official USA debut Italia: 1988-2012 for ATO Records in 2012 and co-wrote two world-premiere, new songs for the release. The collection was given 4-stars and named “...one of the best releases of the year,” by Aesthetic Magazine (Toronto).
As a live-promoter he has presented artists as diverse as Green Day, Fugazi, Merle Haggard, film-maker John Waters, Kris Kristofferson, Tammy Faye, the Blind Boys of Alabama, Vic Chesnutt, Peaches, and the Vienna Boys Choir. These and related activities have raised over $100,000 for local charities and political causes.
As a writer he was first published at the age of nineteen and has contributed regularly to publications such as Guitar Player and Zero Magazine. He is also the author of the non-fiction books "Anger Antidotes: How not to lose your s#&!" (2011) and Hate-less: violence prevention & how to make friends with a f&*#ed-up world (2014).
"Nepotism and academia are both antithetical to major pop-culture revolutions. Innovation has almost, without fail, routinely risen culturally from the bottom to the top, not from the aristocracy that now rules much of the misnomered 'indie' rock world. Pop culture is rarely a trickle down affair. Be it James Brown, Elvis Presley, Bob Marley, Louis Armstrong, Grandmaster Flash, Johnny Rotten, Woody Guthrie, Kurt Cobain, Blind Lemon Jefferson, Django Reinhardt or Eminem, many of the most important artists historically have originated from less than auspicious circumstances." --Ian Brennan