It’s not often that a musician preemptively calls it quits by releasing a full album—most projects simply fizzle out or go on an indefinite hiatus. Donny Knottsville, however, spent last year crafting an elaborate goodbye called My Strangest Adventure that will likely feel bittersweet to listeners, especially those hearing him for the first time.
“I had been wanting to do a ‘farewell’ album for some time to give myself some closure on this creative aspect of my life and attempt to go out on a good note with it,” says Donny Knottsville. “There’s no hard feelings of ‘Oh, I’m too old’ or ‘I never had any commercial success’ or anything like that, although there’s some truth there. It’s more the feeling of moving forward and making way for other things in life, creatively and otherwise. I have been so proud to see the Athens hip-hop scene develop so much in the past few years and see where the kids are taking it. Even though very few of them even know of me or Deaf Judges or any of the stuff I’ve done, I’m just so happy to have been a part of this thing we share, every one of us who takes part in Athens music on any level.”
Today, the local hip-hop artist releases the track “Quick & Nimble” along with B-sides “Savage Dragon” and “Uncanny.” The album’s second single features Sawmill Slang (ex-Deaf Judges) and Sienna Chandler (Monsoon), with beats by Joel Hatstat (Cinemechanica).
Recorded at High Jump Media by Hatstat—who not only engineered co-produced the album, but also created beats and played bass for multiple tracks—My Strangest Adventure intentionally weaves appearances by close collaborators from over the years. In addition to Chandler and Sawmill Slang, the album includes other Deaf Judges members Louie Larceny and Cubenza, as well as a beat from Ian Morris, a friend Knottsville played with while growing up in South Carolina. First-time collaborators include Seline Haze, Four Eyes and Annie Leeth.
“Quick & Nimble” follows the album’s first single, “Cold Stairs,” which features Louie Larceny and Four Eyes. Check out a recently released music video directed by Jeff Reynolds below, and look forward to the release of My Strangest Adventure on Jan. 8.
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