Open Your Ears: Jason Myles Goss

Posted by on Nov 18, 2008 in Uncategorized | 3 comments

 

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Buttermilk pancakes, street sweepers, abandoned carnival sites, ghost stories, lost luggage, bad haircuts…”- these are just some of the words Jason Myles Goss uses to describe what his music sounds like, and I couldn’t agree more. His music is a compilation of our lives; it contains all the little ingredients of the every day, and the random acts which shape us.  He weaves all the little moments, breaths, and stories into musical poetry we can all relate to.

If you are looking for a more concrete description, I could place him in a pop-acoustic genre.  He might be compared to a less poppy Jack Johnson, a more jazzed up Howie Day, or maybe a version of Ben Folds Five. His new album, which will make it’s appearance in the spring of 2009, includes the piano, banjo, organs, and lap steel, besides the usual band setup to create a truly unique sound.

I came upon Goss’s music in a random, but popular fashion- listening to Pandora Radio, hoping to hear something to spice up my worn out itunes playlist. I think it’s safe to say I got what I was looking for. One of his more popular songs, “Twilight Serenade”, popped up, and I immediately fell in love with it.  The song starts off slow but picks up by the end. It’s the type of song that makes you sway and a little day dreamy. It’s easy to just close your eyes, feel the music, and be lulled by the guitar.  It’s one of my favorite songs by him, although to be fair to the others, this might be a little biased. The song was partially written in my home town of Chicago, and if you listen to the lyrics, it talks about the “howling winds rushing through Chicago streets”, which anybody who has been to the city can say they’ve experienced.

“Twilight Serenade” appears with another good tune- “Too Young To Lose”- on Goss’s second album, “Another Ghost”, which debuted in 2005. His first album, “Long Way Down”, was introduced in 2003. It starts off with the upbeat tune “Moving On” and keeps up the energy throughout the album, including the title track “Long Way Down” which is about the disintegration of a relationship. He sings “I’m glad we met, I had no regrets, and I’ll still think of you”, and despite the reluctance of the song, and sadness of the situation, there is a freeing feeling to it as you sing along. He slows it down with songs like “Seven Shells” and “If Wishes Were Horses”, but despite the slower tempo, you can still feel the energy in his voice and the passion of his words.

Goss’s latest album, Dreamland, a live EP released in 2007, is a mix of old songs and a few new ones which offer a preview of his upcoming album “A Plea For A Dreamland” (working title).  The songs on this new CD will differ a little from his previous albums; they “are more playful…more story songs”. The new album is a complete Indie release, which means no label, no producer, and amounts to a lot of time and hard work. Just because the release is Indie, however, doesn’t mean it’s done alone, and Goss had a lot of good hands keeping the project rolling. 

“To me, making a good record is a lot like making a good sandwich. It isn’t hard to get all the ingredients on the counter but putting them together in the right combination is key. You want to find a guy or girl who is pretty handy with the horseradish. That ingredient can either make or break a great sandwich. I have been fortunate to be working with exactly who I want to be working with on this new record, amazing musicians and in terms of making records — top notch sandwich makers.” Goss explained about the production.

 The album was mostly recorded in an old brewery warehouse in Bushwick, a small neighborhood of NYC. During the recording, construction was being done to turn the warehouse into a musician workspace. According to Goss “if you listen closely to the tracks I think you can hear some drilling and working moving dry wall in the background” which makes the album just that much more rootsy. Even if you don’t hear it, it’d be fun to listen for and cool to know that its there.

Like his music, Goss is a down to earth guy just like the rest of us. His ears are a little off (by ¾ of an inch he says), his favorite fruit are strawberries, and according to him (I’ll have to see this for myself) he can do one mean “worm” on the dance floor.

Going beyond albums, Goss also wrote the music for the short film “Reticence”. Right now, he is busy touring the New England states with acts like Kristin Hoffmann, The National Underground, and appearing on HCAM TV, but hopes to be making the trek over to Chicago soon. So keep your eyes pealed for his visit to town and check out his music at :

www.myspace.com/jasonmylesgoss

www.jasonmylesgoss.com

Also, here are just a few of my favorite songs not seen on the MySpace page:

http://www.jasonmylesgoss.com/uploads/files/MovinOn.mp3

http://www.jasonmylesgoss.com/uploads/files/LongWayDown.mp3

http://www.jasonmylesgoss.com/uploads/files/01_January.mp3

And you can get a taste for the other songs on CD Baby:

http://cdbaby.com/cd/gossjasonmyles

http://cdbaby.com/cd/gossjasonmyles2

Happy Listening!