The Cicadas are starting to stir and click in the hot Texan sunshine. Sitting on the porch, with a cold beer, watching the sun sink slowly in the sky as Jim Keaveny starts to play. This is how this album should be listened to, however we can only dream about that in England.
Track 1 (What I ain't got) starts with guitar and harmonica and a list of what Jim has, from an old house to a list of equipment and is essentially a song about what they need to make an album. This seems to echo the struggle of an independent musician trying to record their music and find the hard to define 'something' that will gain the attention of the listening public, get airplay and so bring their music to a wider audience. All without succumbing to the commercial pressures and control of a recording co
ntract. Indeed, Jim raised the money to record this album by cycling from Oceanside, San Diego, California to Savannah, Georgia. That is a distance of over 2300 miles and takes you from the Pacific coast to the Atlantic coast.
The laid back sound continues through the next few tracks, track 2 (Is it you) starting with a wonderful trumpet sound, and track 3 (The Grand Forks) with the slide guitar, the vocals and trumpet adding to the warm summery sound. David Barclay Gomez provides some excellent Electric piano on track 4 (Check You Out) which has a gentle rock beat.
My personal favourite track is Track 8 (Limbo and Grim / The Mariachi Mantra) although it is a tough call given the quality of all the songs. This starts with Jim's voice blending into some subtle slide guitar, with yet more rich and slow Trumpet adding to that lazy summer feel. After that it's time to up the tempo a little to take us through the remaining tracks.
Jim has over the years worked in a variety of jobs from Fisherman to Dishwasher, from Firefighter to Graveyard Maintenance Man, from Brewer to Carpenter. He built his own off-grid home in West Texas. He has drawn together all of these experiences into his music which has a Texas/Americana sound which will please all lovers of the genre and is also a great introduction to anyone who wants to experience Texan Country /Americana at its best.
Pass me another cold beer please….
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