Jackson's new album released in JULY 2005!!!
Written, recorded, produced and mostly played by Jackson himself ....about as DIY as it gets......thanks for supporting independents...
Lyrics are available at jacksonrocks.com
All the Brush Strokes Are Clean and Wide:
Jackson*s New CD, Grow Up To Be a Childhood Genius
reviewed by Duggan Flanakin*
Good songs come from deep inside the guts of people who have lived real lives. The songs tell us something about their own struggles and triumphs but also stretch out into our own psyches to transform our own perspectives and hopefully our attitudes and actions. Listening carefully to the songs of a seasoned troubadour can be dangerous to our status quo - because they force us to be honest, to confront ourselves and our prejudices - our excuses, too - and make decisions whether to allow the music to change us for the better.
Austin singer-songwriter-guitarist Jackson is a dangerous man - because if you let his songs get into your soul, you will never be the same again. For example, in "Like I*ve Never Lost," from the new CD Grow Up To Be a Childhood Genius, Jackson dares the listener to "learn to trust again like I*d never been betrayed." Are we willing to take that dare? Jackson says the reward from such honesty is to learn to love "like we*ve never lost." But dare we believe this amazing revelation?
Jackson asks questions that require us to respond: "More yesterdays than tomorrows can you be sure of, my friend? So find a way to ease your sorrows about what might have been." How many of us have fallen into the trap of holding on to bitterness or grumbling about our mistakes to the extent that we miss the opportunities that today presents? Jackson will not let us get away with it. He*s dangerous to our reveries.
He also challenges those who are hurting: "For a long time you*ve kept things the same. What would happen if everything would change? In a world in which nothing is certain, isn*t it time for loving again?" Well, duh! How dare you argue against this simple wisdom? "Standing There Laughing" assures us that, "On a road this long, trouble*s gonna find you, but the love that*s behind you [later, inside you] is stronger than what you have to do." Dare we then give up or turn around and run away from the challenges in our lives? Not if Jackson*s soul has gotten into your spirit. The reward is that one day you will be standing there laughing at what was once in your way. Does it get any better than this?
Jackson*s secret to success is found in "A Wiser Fool," where he reveals that he has been kicking at stones that he had allowed in his path and helped to make them strong - the stones of the bad habits that have tried to kill him and which die slow (while good habits die easy, he reminds us). In fact, "the ones that are killing me" he says "are the hardest to let go - but when I*m finally free (of these bad habits), a wiser fool shall I be." Folks, this is hard work - anyone who has tried to kick a bad habit knows it.
Jackson closes this song cycle with "Let Me Be Your Living Proof," a song that could only be written by one who has gone through all the stuff that has made him a wiser fool. Here Jackson acknowledges that, "So it comes to this, you know all my secrets, the canvas complete, all the paints have dried. The borders disappear, the colors become clear, and all the brush strokes are clean and wide." In the end Jackson reassures us that his songs are "living proof" that there are "some things you can count on to be true." And who are we to argue?
* Flanakin*s writings can be found at http://flanfire.blogspot.com, where he reports on the Austin music scene, "bringing life to Austin music." He is also editor and publisher of trade newsletters on environmental regulations and a frequent contributor to reports from well-known think tanks.