Following the tragic suicide of Neal Casal in August, longtime friend Eric Krasno will step in as the guitarist for Circles Around The Sun‘s upcoming 2019 tour dates. The addition of Krasno was revealed by Circles Around The Sun keyboardist Adam MacDougall in a new interview with Relix.
As Neal’s camp revealed upon the announcement of There’s A Reward: A Celebration of the Life & Music of Neal Casal at The Capitol Theatre on Wednesday, September 25th, Neal left behind specific wishes for Circles Around The Sun to continue in his absence. The surviving members, keyboardist Adam MacDougall, bassist Dan Horne, and drummer Mark Levy, have decided to honor that request and move forward together.
When asked if the remaining members of Circles Around The Sun (MacDougall, bassist Dan Horne, and drummer Mark Levy) considered continuing the band as a trio, Adam responded, “We definitely went through a lot of thinking about that, and if it was something we should even think about. It was really tough. We’re going to go on with Eric Krasno, one of our good friends and great musical companions, who has stepped in to be a part of the shows we have coming up.”
Continued MacDougall, “It’s definitely a process, but we love this music. The three of us- Dan, Mark, and myself- we really love it and really don’t want to stop playing it. I don’t want [our decision] to come off in any other way than based on the fact we really, really love this band so much. We had done sideman gigs for a long time- especially Neal and I had. We would always sit around and talk about the dream: the feeling of what it was like to be a teenager and start your own band. It’s your band, with everyone pulling their own weight, doing their part. It’s yours. But, then you have to make a living and that feeling goes away. You do learn a lot from playing other people’s music. It’s great. It’s amazing. But, this band felt like being in high school again.”
As Eric Krasno tells Live For Live Music, “This is a tough one. Nobody on earth can replace Neal Casal, he was truly one of a kind. That being said, I do know he really wanted to the band to continue… I was conflicted when the idea was initially discussed but when we all got in a room to play it really felt good. Circles is such a great band with a totally unique sound and approach… I hope I can do justice in paying tribute to my friend Neal while adding my own flavor to it.”
Circles Around The Sun completed recording a new studio album the week prior to Neal’s passing. In the Relix interview, MacDougall revealed that finishing the album was among the wishes Casal left behind.
The album’s producer, Jim Scott, will see the recording through to its completion with plans being made for its release in early 2020. CATS had also collaborated with drummer Joe Russo on an EP entitled Circles Around The Sun Meets Joe Russo that was already set to be released October 18th on limited edition vinyl and digital formats.
Krasno will serve as the guitarist on the remainder of Circles Around The Sun’s scheduled 2019 dates.
Tickets for the all-star tribute to Neal Casal at The Capitol Theatre featuring Circles Around The Sun and many, many more on Wednesday, September 25th are still available here. If you can’t make it out, you can watch a free livestream of the show via The Relix Channel.
For a full list of upcoming Circles Around The Sun dates, head here.