The art of distilling and the art of music are related and symbiotic. The orchestration of different moving parts, the “vision” that no one else quite sees until fully formed, the bit by bit, piece by piece creative process and most of all the energy and imagination that creates something vibrant and spirited. Copper & Kings is American Brandy and is as rooted in American culture, particularly music and art, as it is in the craft of distilling fine spirits.
This is not a platform.
This is who we are. We are all inveterate music lovers. Many of us are musicians (for better or worse) – this group excludes me – my instrument of choice is Spotify. It informs us as people not marketers or distillers. To do it any other way would be shallow and inconsequential. And hokey.
We’ve built our love of music across the company – our name is meant to sound like a band (think Kings of Leon, Shovels & Rope, Band Of Horses, Iron & Wine).
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We have 3 stills, all named after women in Bob Dylan songs – all songs appear on the Dylan album “Desire” – this is a deliberate reference to brandy (brandy is inherently sexy, it is viscous and rhythmic, it is power and grace, it is smooth with a punch, it is the velvet glove). The stills were all named by our Distiller Alan Bishop.
Isis: 1,000 gallons.
Big, bold and robust distillate. Isis is the Egyptian Goddess Of Fertility.
I married Isis on the fifth day of May
But I could not hold on to her very long
So I cut off my hair and I rode straight away
For the wild unknown country where I could not go wrong.
Magdalena: 750 gallons.
Elegant, full of character, lovely polish in terms of distillate.
The song is Romance In Durango
Hot chili peppers in the blistering sun
Dust on my face and my cape
Me and Magdalena on the run
I think this time we shall escape
Sara: 50 gallons.
Sara is a mirror image of Magdalena in all ways. She is small, gorgeous and makes the prettiest, refined distillate. She is named for Bob Dylan’s second wife.
Sweet virgin angel, sweet love of my life
Radiant jewel, mystical wife
Brandy is incredibly romantic spirit. The most romantic of spirits. It calls out for valor, it calls out for intimacy, people fall in love with and to brandy. And there is always music in the surround sound of romance isn’t there?
So what is Sonic Aging? We play music to our barrels 24/7.
We have 5 major subwoofers in our basement maturation cellar. The principle is not vibration but PULSATION. We pulse (a bass note in particular) music through the cellar. The alcohol molecule being less dense than a water molecule starts to move and collide with other alcohol molecules inside the barrels which eventually collide with the barrel wall which starts to create a “ distillate wave” inside the barrel resulting in increased frequency of contact over time between the distillate with the barrel walls and in our opinion enhances maturation.
And anyway happy brandy makes for happy drinking.
The music is played through Spotify. We have numerous playlists that you can follow on CopperAndKings – musicians birthdays, seasonal selections, “iPod Wars”, just selections made by us, to birthday playlists for our staff and if we launch a market – we always play that music to the barrels at that time.
Our cocktails are named after songs, and after musical genres – Classics, Covers (where we swap brandy out for the typical brown spirit), Indie (our own inventions) to Jazz – if anyone wants to send us a cocktail they can.
In many ways a company is like a band
Everyone has a specific talent and role to play, and the best bands play well together, like each other, and bring out the best in each other. Day after day.
Products are like songs on an album. They are all related, but different. And you really want everyone to like every song, but the reality is that they don’t. And the reality is that not everyone will like your music at all and you have to accept that, and just keep making the best music you can.
The difference between a band and a brand is the letter R.
Copper & Kings makes American Brandy upon a uniquely American paradigm. Something that reflects an American sensibility Vs a European aspiration. We are a definitive American Brandy, not a derivative European influenced brandy.
Our influences are American music, art and American whiskey.
And that enthusiasm, energy and excitement is infused in to every barrel, every bottle and every glass.
Because American Brandy can boogie. Yessir, gets down and boogies.
Visit the Copper and Kings American Brandy Distillery website to learn more about their craft and to plan a visit.
Bob Dylan – Isis (1976)
Bob Dylan – Romance in Durango
Bob Dylan – Sara