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PI JACOBS —A LITTLE BLUE (Travianna Records)

 

http://www.pijacobs.com

 

Singer-songwriter PI Jacobs strikes a reasonable balance as she combines serious, light and breezy humour with sharply penned lyrics, and snappy licks throughout her latest album, her 7th commercial offering, A Little Blue.

 

Jacob’s describes her music as being an Americana bluesy rock thing. But there is more to it than that for A Little Blue is a little different from her usual work, since it is her first, fully acoustic recording. With top notch bluegrass pickers playing on the record (Aaron Ramsey, bass, mandolin and guitar on “Halfway Done”) and Jeff Partin (dobro, lap steel guitar) plus harmony vocals (she sings some of them) and her own acoustic guitar the record combines rural climes and urban.

 

Now signed to Virginia label, Mountain Fever's sister company, Travianna Records Jacobs was raised in urban San Francisco, and enjoys many different strains and influences that run through her music. Some of the best can be heard on the Dobro warmed “Weed And Wine”, bustling soul-stirring number “Dance Clean” (here she sings of how she wants to sweat like a libertine down in the church) and with a stripped down feel, other than guitar, bass and harmony vocals she delivers evocative ode “The Moment”. A song where she reflects on her life. While the music is pretty, and her songs, well written there is generally a lack of excitement. As heard in the drifting “Half Way Done” and a few more, the record needs more songs offering a greater urgency, as in the bouncy infectious guitar and Dobro warmed “Dead Man”. Good though the likes of “Purple State” and “Good Things” might be they don’t make the impression of poignant “When My Father Is Gone”; an autobiographical piece I imagine.

 

                                                            Maurice Hope  

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May 2018

1
John Prine
67 pts.
The Tree of Forgiveness
Oh Boy Records
JJC,MB,SP,RM
2
Levi Parham
58 pts.
It's All Good
Continental Records
CRS,JB,TK
3
Jeb Barry and the Pawn Shop Saints
55 pts.
Texas, etc...
DollyRocker
HDB,CVL,DHO
4
Michael McDermott
54 pts.
Out From Under
Continental Song City
JDO,LK,BK
5
Sam Morrow
48 pts.
Concrete and Mud
Forty Below Records
MA,JBO,HB
6
Caleb Caudle
39 pts.
Crushed Coins
Cornelius Chapel Records
 
7
Western Centuries
36 pts.
Songs From The Deluge
Free Dirt Records
MF
8
Carter Sampson
34 pts.
Lucky
Continental Song City
 
9
Charley Crockett
30 pts.
Lonesome as a Shadow
Son of Davy/30 Tigers
 
10
Courtney Marie Andrews
28 pts.
May Your Kindness Remain
Loose Music
JV
11
Ed Romanoff
27 pts.
The Orphan King
Pinerock Records
 
 
Joan Baez
27 pts.
Whistle Down The Wind
Proper Records
HD
 
Pharis and Jason Romero
27 pts.
Sweet Old Religion
Lula Records
SZ,LM
14
Gretchen Peters
24 pts.
Dancing With The Beast
Proper Records
KG
 
Old Crow Medicine Show
24 pts.
Volunteer
Columbia Records
GF
 
Will Stewart
24 pts.
County Seat
Cornelius Chapel Records
 
17
Ben Reel
22 pts.
Land Of Escape
B REEL Records
GC,FC
 
Birds Of Chicago
22 pts.
Love In Wartime
Signature Sounds
 
 
Emily Herring
22 pts.
Gliding
Eight 30 Records
RST,RH
20
Jenny van West
21 pts.
Happiness To Burn
Independent
PJ,FS,JJ
 
Mary Gauthier
21 pts.
Rifles And Rosary Beads
In the Black Records
 
22
Sarah Shook & The Disarmers
20 pts.
Years
Bloodshot Records
FCE
23
David Starr
19 pts.
South And East
Independent
HM
24
Cold Tone Harvest
18 pts.
After You
Independent
 
25
Grant Peeples
17 pts.
Settling Scores vol. 2
Continental

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