Acclaimed solo artist Joseph Arthur and former R.E.M. guitarist Peter Buck have joined forces in a new group they’ve dubbed Arthur Buck. The collaboration was forged after the pair met up late last year in Baja, Mexico, where Buck now lives. They improvised eight songs in eight hours and performed them for a handful of Baja locals. Since then, they’ve been working on their debut album, which New West Records will be releasing later this year, coinciding with a North American and European tour.
“It was really spontaneous and kind of magical in its own way, as [being in Mexico] we were kind of disconnected from everything,” Buck says of the beginnings of the partnership, to which Arthur adds, “All of a sudden it was like I had this new musical partner and friend, and that relieved the music of the burden of self, if that makes sense.”
Both Arthur and Buck have Georgia roots. R.E.M., of course, helped put Athens on the international musical map, and Buck logged most of his growing up years in Atlanta. Arthur was born in Akron but moved to Atlanta in the early ‘90s, where he played in bands and began to establish himself as a solo artist.