I recently heard a radio broadcast from the World Cafe in Philadelphia that featured the solo music of Jim James along with some insightful interviews about the creative process, Jim’s new studio in Kentucky, and how his spiritual searchings have impacted his music.
James, best known for his work as the creative force behind the band My Morning Jacket, recently embarked on a soul-searching spiritual journey of sorts following an accident at MMJ show that, thankfully he survived, but resulted in him being out of commission and assigned to bed rest for a while.
Part of James’ spiritual development came about from reading a 1929 graphic novel titled “God’s Man” by Lynd Ward. Ward is well-known as an early pioneer of graphic novels told only through woodcuts. These are incredible works of art that tell a moving story without the boundaries of language.
In February of this year, James released his first solo album “Regions of Light and Sound of God” on ATO Records. The album is a beautiful work of introspection and a testament to Jim’s ability to take the concepts of spiritual awakening and convert them to song. The tracks on this album are very well done and worth a listen.
I find the track “A New Life” somewhat reminiscent of John Lennon’s solo work. Give it a listen and let me know if you hear it too. Sorta a “Double Fantasy” vibe and a hint of “Just Like Starting Over“.
James, born 1978 in Louisville, KY, attended Catholic schools through 12th grade and refers to himself as a “recovering Catholic”.
- “State of the Art (AEIOU)”
- “Know Til Now”
- “Dear One”
- “A New Life”