He hails from Arkansas, USA, and is a direct descendant of Jesse James, but this singer-songwriter seems to me to be much braver than the dreaded outlaw. His songs have been compared with other music from the South, the same American region that gave us Johnny Cash, though he now lives in New York. He clearly wants people to listen to his lyrics. Armed with just his guitar, Jeremy James tells his poetic stories about love, church, and politics through alt-country and folk music.
In 2005 James produced his first album "Wasted Youth.” His second album “Grey Gardens” appeared later the same year. It was critically lauded and opened new perspectives for him. Now there is a new album with 9 songs: "Landlocked," in which Jeremy James’ most intimate songs are heard.
In “Home,” the first song on this album, he talks about his nostalgia for his home state, and in a sense, his nation, when he says: "You can take the boy out of the country, but you cannot take my country from me." The accompaniment of the angelic voice of singer Casey J. Chapman ensures that this number is the absolute highlight of "Landlocked.” In "Best Defense" he speaks of tolerance, justice and fairness. "All The Things We Knew" - which features Namoli Brennet and a clever harmonica arrangement - is about the continuous changes in our lives and how we struggle to face them. On "Waiting" a fiercely played mandolin is the sole accompaniment to the singer. Also on "Thruway" the mandolin plays a leading role. Both are very clever.
"The Sober Light Of Day" highlights the sonic quality of Jeremy James’ vocals: polished, vibrant, and emotional. On this track Namoli Brennet delivers absolutely brilliant piano work. "Best Defense," with its skillful guitar playing and rawness, is a fully formed, captivating number. Finally, "Measure Up" is perhaps the most personal, intimate song on "Landlocked.”
You really cannot ignore this album: it is heartfelt and showcases a promising artist. Nice.