Mark Olson, whose “Many Colored Kite” album is getting released this week, says he’s wide open when it comes to doing more reunion shows with his former band, the revered alt-country group The Jayhawks. They’ve already done three such shows this summer, and “We’ll see what’s going to happen,” he says.
Right now, he’s busy with his own cross-country U.S. tour for the folky, lovely “Kite” – with appearances from Santa Monica to Brooklyn and numerous points in between lined up this summer in support of the Ryko Records album. The 48-year-old Olson says, “I have to admit, when people think of musicians, they usually think of coming out of the gate by the time they’re 20 and doing their best work. I’ve kind of gone up and down, up and down – and it feels like in the past four years, it’s finally all come together.”
Olson’s gone through personal travail including a marital breakup, and his last album, the acclaimed 2007 “Salvation Blues,” was soul-baring and plaintive. The new album, with his girlfriend, Norwegian singer-musician Ingunn Ringvold, collaborating, has the sun coming out from behind those clouds of the past.
As far as touring, “We’ve done it before and I know we can do it, know the kind of places we’ll be playing. Getting to play every night — as long as you get to travel under reasonable circumstances, it’s a lovely way to live,” says Olson, who lives in the California desert in Joshua Tree – and in Oslo, Norway. He’ll return to Europe to tour in the fall.