Garland Jeffreys - The King of In Between

Garland Jeffreys - The King Of In Between As a former Fortune 500 Strategic Planner, one of the key items that I was trained to look for is something called "convergence." That is to say, analyzing a whole series of internal/external business, technology and operational factors and looking for natural patterns of "convergence" between those factors. Doing this type of analysis on the natural patterns of convergence, would lead me to draw certain conclusions about the potential "future state" of these factors, leading me to begin to structure a strategy that would enhance/create business opportunities around certain 'converged factors." The implementation of that strategy is left to others to figure out.

The title of Garland Jeffreys new album is "The King Of In Between" and that title suggests a kind of "convergence." And that convergence is a reflection of the various 'factors' that seemingly make up the sum total of what I will refer to here as the "Garland Jeffreys Experience."

In the case of the album, some of these factors are obvious and we have certainly seen them displayed in the past both from Garland as well as by other artists. For example, there are songs on this album that are about existing in a world that never quite accepts the fact that you are a person of "bi-racial origins." There are songs that celebrate the uniqness of being from NYC, and take that even one step further by celebrating being from Brooklyn.

Musically we hear a convergence of musical styles. There is everything here from rock to blues to soul to reggae (real reggae that sounds like it is derived from Curtis Mayfield, not the crap we hear today that is called "reggae.") My three favorite songs on the album are "'til John Lee Hooker Calls Me," "Love Is Not a Cliche" and "Rock and Roll Music." Taken together these three songs represent the "convergence" that 1960's pop music was supposed to represent for the American people culturally, personally and spiritually.

Perhaps a few of you all out there might remember a wonderful movie called "American Pop," by a filmmaker named Ralph Bashiki? It's an animated movie that speaks to a similar notion of "convergence " that is expressed in the album "The King Of In Between" by Garland Jeffreys.

Bottom line for me is that this is a 'thinking persons album," which doesn't provide any of the answers, but it does provide most of the key "questions," that all of us should be thinking about during a period of time that looks a whole lot like a "convergence" of the 1960's and the 1930's. In other words, just like any good strategic planner, Garland Jeffreys is leaving it up to us as listeners to do the implementation of the strategy he has laid out. The irony of the title is that this is truly a time period when none of us can afford to be "in between' anything. (you betta pick your sides and know exactly why you picked the side you are on, cuz it's gonna get ugly.)

Garland Jeffreys - The King Of In Between (track listing)
1. Coney Island Winter 3:47
2. I'm Alive 4:01
3. Streetwise 4:46
4. The Contortionist 3:51
5. All Around the World 4:36
6. 'til John Lee Hooker Calls Me 3:59
7. Love Is Not a Cliche 3:27
8. Rock and Roll Music 2:53
9. The Beautiful Truth 4:02
10. Roller Coaster Town

Look for some of the tracks to be in the rotation of the NuSoul & Blues @ channels in the near future.
--Bob Davis

Blues, Hip Hop and Soul Music Director

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