Special to the Record
For Lynn Jackson, it’s all about the songs.
Ten years and six albums into her recording career, the one constant fans have come to expect from the Kitchener, Ont.-based singer-songwriter is top-notch songwriting and that voice.
“When I write a song, I often hear the arrangement fully formed – I let the songs lead me into whatever direction they want to go,” she says. “I guess I’m considered a folk-roots artist, but if my writing and ideas take me outside the genre, I’m not afraid to stretch out creatively. There are no rules when it comes to songwriting.”
To celebrate her 10-year milestone, Jackson released the retrospective album The Acoustic Sessions in September on Busted Flat Records, and she’s hitting the road this fall to share these songs with music fans across Alberta and B.C. She’ll bring The Acoustic Sessions with her to Courtenay tonight (Thursday), when she performs at Zocalo Cafe with special guest Jilli Martini.
The show starts at 7 p.m.
Released as a duo album with Jackson’s long-time collaborator Chris Boyne, The Acoustic Sessions revisits 13 songs from Jackson’s past six albums in a sparser, acoustic setting.
“Chris is a really talented songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who fronts one of my all-time favourite bands called Sexdwarf,” says Jackson. “We’ve worked together for the past five years, and he is often my accompanist when I play live. The idea behind this recording is to give people a little taste of what we do in concert. Everyone on the record has played live with me in some form or another.”
Recorded basically live off the floor at the home studio of Teenage Fanclub’s Norman Blake, The Acoustic Sessions showcases the strength of Jackson’s writing, with the songs nestled in arrangements that are tasteful but minimal.
“On the original recordings, some of these songs featured strings, electric guitars, piano – much bigger arrangements,” says Jackson. “The tracks on the new album are closer to how they sounded when I wrote them. But instead of just releasing bare-bones versions of the songs, I’ve fleshed them out a bit with upright bass, pedal steel, violin, national steel – still minimal, but with a little extra sparkle here and there. Norman has a great ear and captured everything beautifully.”
The album is a stripped-down rootsy retrospective of Jackson’s writing since 2002 and follows up 2012’s critically-acclaimed Down in the Dust.
She takes her cues from Lucinda Williams, Kathleen Edwards and Eliza Gilkyson, using her “whiskey and honey” voice to mix her timeless melodies while spinning tales about love, loss and everyday people.
Jill Martini is thrilled to be opening the evening for the friend she first met during Jackson’s 2013 tour. Martini (a.k.a. Jillian Gathright) is recognized for her ability to perform a broad range of styles and genres.
Her versatility as a vocalist, and the natural way she engages her audience has made her a local favourite. She sets the room at ease with her relaxed style as she delivers each song with passion and conviction, captivating people of all ages and different musical tastes.
At this special event, Jill is joined by the accomplished guitarist, Alan Jossul, to perform a set of eclectic songs carefully chosen for this particular show.
For more information on tonight’s show, call 250-331-0933.
To learn more about Jackson, visit www.lynnjackson.net.