I’ve been talking a lot about Bone Walker as a soundtrack album for the Free Court of Seattle fantasy novel series, because, well, it is.

But I think that creates a misleading impression. People have been after me for a long time to do an instrumental and/or a trad album. This is also that album.

Leaving out the readings, and the tie-in factor, and this is a 10-track album of mostly traditional music. The arrangements aren’t real traditional, maybe – or, as one might say, “that’s all well and good, but it’s not very Irish, is it?” – but it’s still pretty heavily trad.

And that’s mostly just a long way of saying, “You don’t have to read the novels to like the album.” It’ll all make sense without that – well, okay, maybe the readings will be a little bit context-free. But the rest?

This was envisioned as a quick project, something that would take about six months and be a fun Kickstarter reward. But it grew way beyond that. Sure, part of the reason it took so long is because of unpleasant surprises like eye surgeries. But it also took longer because we put so much into it. We pushed ourselves hard. We brought in guests like Alexander James Adams and Sunnie Larsen and Sarah Kellington and Ellen Eades and Leannan Sidhe and Klopfenpop. We invented new process technologies and went way the hell over budget, something I’m not in the least sorry about.

So what I’m saying is: don’t hear “soundtrack album” and think “accessory to something else.” It’s not. It stands on its own. Give the samples a listen, and if you like what you hear, pre-order. Even with the Kickstarter money, we won’t be ahead of this curve on shipment. But I think when people hear it, they’ll know – it was worth it.