The Long Awaited…Jim of Seattle

I’d like to talk to you today about a friend of mine whose CD I’m just getting to know. I spacebooked and tweeted about it about a week ago (or more), and I shall probably mention it again (for sure). In addition to this, my pal Tom Giarrosso passed it along on HIS spacebook so that’s a good example of how passing the love along is meant to work. Let that be a lesson to us all, gremlins.

Now … This particular project is the first, brand new release from a musician I know from Song Fight! called Jim of Seattle. You should go look into this, because Jim is an exceptional musician who has created an amazing piece of Art. He is not the only “Jim” in Seattle, but as far as I am concerned after just an inital perusal of this material so I could get started enough to write a bit to you so you could go quickly and get this recording – he might as well be!

Jim is not new to the music industry, as you will no doubt figure out. This is the caliber of work I’d like to feel under my wings when I make a release and finally say “BOOM! Look at this! I have made sticky sound that will last for generations!” So not only is this thing just plain charming and important – Jim is a musician’s musician.

For Jim this has been a real journey. You’ll grok that if you read the interview between Jim of Seattle and Green Monkey Records President Tom Dyer (you can also see a fun photo there of Jim with a bike and a pigeon, and other nifty photos of Jim doing cool stuff. I rather enjoyed these because I like seeing pictures of people that I know from the internet even though I know they do not look like their avatars! Also if you read my blog you know that I am creepy and will fully and curiously photo stalk to see who I’m talking to :)).

Anyway, yes, there’s a special kind of energy hearing a recording from someone who has taken the time to reveal their vision to the world with such deliberate intent after a lifelong trip through many other musical avenues. So this recording IS pretty intense. And it HAS been a long time coming.

You can preview the recording at CD Baby (linked up there too, by that iTunes link); and there is a small sample of it on the Green Monkey Records website where you can hear three tracks in entirety –

{EDIT/1-19-2012: You can hear more than THREE tracks, actually. I went back and checked after my original posting of this blog and saw it! On the player there is a small dragbar to the far right of those first three tracks (like one on a browser). Scroll down with it. Voila! There are several more songs and you can actually hear them all!} –

-one of which is the track that is also featured in the video ‘Laboratory Rat.’

The video is creepy and slightly horrifying (in a compelling and thought-provoking fashion), but … it’s … CUTE …somehow… Because there are drawings of all these “oooOOOOOooo” things (he made the video with Bill Lieren). Icky scary creepy CUTE drawings. And that’s all I’m going to say. No more spoilers. 🙂

From what I can tell in initial passes through Jim’s work – there’s a presence of intriguing juxtapositions. Little sonic ironies and pointed statements amidst moments of endearing delight. Really, I would say the listener is very musically well taken care of – Jim does know how to make you a spectator in a performance space. He has the background for this. But you have to hear it for yourself to really FEEL the Whole Thing, because he is just not Like anyone else, even if they are skilled at arranging pop songs into lush arrangements. He is different because HE is different. This doesn’t sound like orchestral showboating, this sounds like a lot of FUN.

I think this is why I like Jim, and why I was so pleased to encounter him at Song Fight in the first place and so happy every time he showed approval of anything I did in MY work. It’s because I GET that feeling of having a broad range of styles and of having just a LOT to say. Really, this should be appealing to most people as creators OR listeners or both … because at your CD collections they are just that – collections. Why would there not be a range of style and feel within one artist? The best sound-stories have an Album’s Entirety in mind, even if they are conceptual and able to be interpreted by the listener. I still feel I need more time alone with this recording from start to uninterrupted finish (mainly because I still do need to finish and hear All of The Bits). But I bet it stacks up through both skimming and deeper sonic inquiry.

Hearing developing cohesive complexity in someone’s work like this gives me hope that perhaps a thing like this is an accomplish-able goal! It’s exciting. It makes me realize that I can grow A Representative sound myself, over time, even if it is Range-y. There need to be more recordings like this, and I think this every time I hear something Quirky and Fun, and Beautiful.

On a personal note, there’s some titles here that I am happy to have heard before while participating in the Song Fight! contest – and I am inspired to see them more fully developed. This makes me want to hear more realized recordings of SF titles from others. But this recording is pretty special and I’ve been waiting for it 🙂

DEFINITELY check this out for yourself. Also, the first 100 copies will be signed. Order now! 🙂

********************

(this is a first in a series of Promontion-ary “Reviews-that-are-Gushy.” most of them horribly late. i am fortunate to have a few Talented Friends whose work I have really enjoyed, so it has been a time of Great Creativity.)
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The Long Awaited…Jim of Seattle

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