I am head over heels in love with Raymond’s weeping tone — the most chill-inducing, emotionally responsive dialog I’d had with music since discovering Satie as a child — it was then and it is now, truly haunting. After a year of personnel trials, my roommate and I stole Raymond for our own band, and not only did he smother our songs with his enchanting steel, he was virtuosic with a variety of atypical instruments such as baritone guitar and theremin, he utilized them all. The band was short-lived — I split to jam with Ariel Pink, Raymond fled to Portland, then me subsequently to New York City — but in founding the ESP Institute years later, there was always a recurring mental note; “we must make Raymond’s pedal steel album.” I had managed to wrangle his blessed performance on a remix for Project Club’s ‘El Mar Y La Luna’, but it took almost a decade until I once again wore the producer hat and we began working on ‘The Lost Art Of Wandering’, a title borrowed from Sam Shepard’s ‘Stories’. Spiritually candid, expansive yet enveloping, this is the strung-out, visceral music that simply radiates from Raymond. Each song is his set of coordinates in a vast open terrain, holding a sentimental familiarity, a truthful longing for the simple comforts that diffuse life’s complications, a place to get lost.