12 Songs

EDITORS’ NOTES

Oklahoma’s JD McPherson is obviously obsessed with vintage recordings, yet his sound isn’t overly retro. Blame it on good taste and memorable tunes. Sure, straight-up rockabilly worship emanates from the opening “North Side Gal,” which sounds like it was mixed at Sun Studio circa 1956. And the piano-pounding, sax-blasting closer “Scandalous” would make perfect sense piping from the speakers of an old low-riding Chevy Impala (dig that vintage tube-amp guitar distortion). But McPherson deviates from total malt-shop kitsch with the slow-burning title track, which boasts proto-shoegazing guitar effects that have more in common with Johnny Marr than Johnny B. Goode. With its lush string arrangements and smoldering tempos, the dark and moody “A Gentle Awakening” would sit well on a David Lynch soundtrack or alongside Lana Del Rey’s “Video Games” on a mix for that special someone. Still, standout cuts like “Dimes for Nickels” (as well as the anachronistic album cover photo) reveal a man who feels more comfortable living in a world built from past artifacts.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Oklahoma’s JD McPherson is obviously obsessed with vintage recordings, yet his sound isn’t overly retro. Blame it on good taste and memorable tunes. Sure, straight-up rockabilly worship emanates from the opening “North Side Gal,” which sounds like it was mixed at Sun Studio circa 1956. And the piano-pounding, sax-blasting closer “Scandalous” would make perfect sense piping from the speakers of an old low-riding Chevy Impala (dig that vintage tube-amp guitar distortion). But McPherson deviates from total malt-shop kitsch with the slow-burning title track, which boasts proto-shoegazing guitar effects that have more in common with Johnny Marr than Johnny B. Goode. With its lush string arrangements and smoldering tempos, the dark and moody “A Gentle Awakening” would sit well on a David Lynch soundtrack or alongside Lana Del Rey’s “Video Games” on a mix for that special someone. Still, standout cuts like “Dimes for Nickels” (as well as the anachronistic album cover photo) reveal a man who feels more comfortable living in a world built from past artifacts.

TITLE TIME
2:31
2:44
2:17
4:45
2:56
2:10
3:26
2:43
2:58
2:36
3:00
2:28

About JD McPherson

Singer/songwriter JD McPherson makes vintage-sounding rock with nods to '40s R&B, blues, and '50s rockabilly. A native of Oklahoma, he grew up listening to a wide array of music from traditional country and rockabilly to punk and hip-hop. Although music was always an interest, McPherson first worked on his family's cattle ranch and later earned a Master's degree in open media from Tulsa University, eventually teaching and receiving attention for his video art installations. McPherson is a member of the Tulsa-based rockabilly ensemble the Starkweather Boys, whose classic style caught the ear of Chicago retro-rock impresario Jimmy Sutton. A job backing Sutton on a few shows followed for McPherson, as did the idea of his own solo project. In 2010, he released his solo debut, the Sutton-produced Signs & Signifiers (featuring the single "North Side Gal"), on Hi-Style Records. In 2012, Signs & Signifiers was re-released to a wider audience on Rounder Records and ultimately reached number 47 on the Billboard Rock Albums chart. That same year, McPherson was invited to join acclaimed British singer/songwriter Nick Lowe on a leg of his West Coast tour. Two years later, he delivered The Warm Covers EP, which featured versions of songs by Billy Boy Arnold, Lowe, and others. In 2015, he returned with his sophomore full-length album, the Mark Neil-produced Let the Good Times Roll. ~ Matt Collar

  • ORIGIN
    Buffalo Valley, OK
  • BORN
    Apr 14, 1977

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