The third volume of the massive, ambitious, and unique project, For the Birds — in which hundreds of artists created new recordings inspired by birdsongs — has arrived today, July 29, with music from artists like the Beastie Boys’ AdRock and Wild Belle singer-songwriter Natalie Bergman.
AdRock’s contribution “Pasadena Parrots” clocks in at just under a minute and begins with some screeching and squawking that gives way to a rush of hardcore guitars peppered with some laser-like synths. Bergman, meanwhile, has turned in a sweet and charming tune, “The Little Bird,” that feels like a long-lost bit of children’s music finally unearthed (the song’s music video also captures that old-school children’s entertainment vibe).
For the Birds: The Birdsong Project launched earlier this year and will eventually comprise five volumes and 242 recordings. While there are plenty of musicians contributing to the project, it also boasts offerings from a handful of authors and actors.
Along with AdRock and Bergman, For the Birds, Vol. III features contributions from Laurie Anderson, Devendra Banhart, John Cale, Alice Coltrane, Thurston Moore and Wobbly, Daniel Lanois, Loudon Wainwright III, Woodkid, and Sqürl (a duo comprising filmmaker Jim Jarmusch and Carter Logan). There are also spoken word selections from Greta Gerwig, Conor Oberst, Michelle Williams, and acclaimed author Lorrie Moore.
For the Birds was conceived by executive producer Rebecca Reagan and spearheaded by producer and music supervisor Randall Poster. The final two volumes will be released in August and September, and the full collection will later be released as a 20-LP vinyl box set. All proceeds will be donated to the National Audubon Society, which is dedicated to the conservation of birds and their habitats.
“As we release volume three, For the Birds… I am overflowing with even more love and gratitude,” Reagan said in a statement. “I listen to these gifts, to the incredible committed reverence for our winged friends, who surf the space between us — interconnecting all. I am humbled by the outpouring of love and support by our incredible community, and of course I am so thankful to my creative partner Randall Poster who believed in my vision for this great project… which had now blossomed into a life of its own.”