Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Folk, World Music, Pop, R&B, Rock
With a sound that has been aptly described as Celtic Soul, Scottish-born singer/songwriter Jackie Leven has carved a 30-year career from his strikingly poignant observations of the human condition. Drawing from a musical a... more »
Listen to Samples
With a sound that has been aptly described as Celtic Soul, Scottish-born singer/songwriter Jackie Leven has carved a 30-year career from his strikingly poignant observations of the human condition. Drawing from a musical ancestry that includes Van Morrison, Lightnin' Hopkins and the countless un-named singers of work songs from around the globe, Leven transcends the traditional acoustic guitar sound by melding the sensibilities of a thousand different instruments and musical styles.
Leven s extensive travels -- which flavor his work considerably -- have seen him make his home at numerous point on the globe, befriend and collaborate with people such as noted-author Robert Bly ( Iron John ) and garner praise from all corners along the way. In 1998, Leven was awarded the Jahrespreis der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik - the most prestigious and serious critical German award for best album of the year.
Night Lilies, Leven s latest work, is a dark and wondrous adventure that manages to smash the folk mould with its gritty lyrics, strong American blues/jazz influence and anthemic pop architecture. Songs such as Empty In Soho Square, Alvis Green and Universal Blue resonate with the wisdom and emotional depth of a musical journey three-decades deep, providing a fascinating window into Jackie Leven s truly unique artistry.
A softer, more romantic Jackie
Gareth Hickery | Seacliff, South Australia | 06/15/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This album is no follow up to the harsh and uncomfortable "Fairy Tales for Hardmen". This album is far more accessible. Instead, the songs are as close to love songs as you will get from the "man from the kingdom of Fyfe." He sings of past relationships, whether true or fantasy, with great insight and the melodies and general mood of the album is warm and good humoured. He continues to make great albums and they are all significantly different fromthe previous. He deserves a bigger audience and this may well the album to do it ."
Never Give a Sword to a Man who can't Dance....
S. GODFREY | Risca, South Wales | 11/14/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I don't know if Jackie Leven can dance or not, but certainly the man can sing, and he is a fine songsmith too. Attempts to describe his music usually resort to comparisons with Leonard Cohen, Scott Walker, Kevin Ayers, Chris Rea...even the odd reference to Elvis. What we have here is a quality contemporary singer-songwriter who has learned his craft the hard way (I'm guessing) and who has strong Celtic roots which frequently colour his imagery and the texture of his songs. Earlier albums have been unflinchingly idiosyncratic, but with "Night Lillies" he has produced a collection of accessible, even radio-friendly songs with memorable hooks and a big, beefy sound providing suitable backing for his powerful singing. He's no mean guitarist too. The title track, "Empty in Soho Square", "Alvis Green" and "Universal Blue" were my initial favourites, irresistible on first hearing, but the whole album is great. Sure, the guy deserves much wider appreciation than he is getting just now, but I wonder if he really has the appetite for the "star-maker machinery behind the popular song" to become as famous as some of his more lauded contemporaries. Listen to this one, enjoy it, and then explore the somewhat darker "Fairytales for Hard Men"."