Fresh off the heels of winning “Best Guitarist” at the 2020 International Blues Challenge in Memphis, popular Canadian blues artist JW Jones was looking forward to a huge year before COVID hit and halting his tour schedule.
“I knew I had to do something productive to stay positive. I turned isolation into inspiration” said the JUNO-nominated Jones, whose searing axemanship has been praised in recent years by legendary blues artists Buddy Guy and Robert Cray.
From original music to previously unreleased songs, “this album sounds bigger and wider-than-ever” says Jones, “thanks to Eric Eggleston of Johnny Hall Productions, who has wicked ears and a fresh approach to the production values”.
It features a 17-piece band with a 13-piece horn section, plus additional tracking of vocals, guitars, and studio effects that led to the perfect album title, Sonic Departures.
High production values didn’t take priority over keeping it real, though. “Every single guitar solo on this record, with the exception of one, was recorded in one take, and it was the first-and-only-take, with the band and horn section performing together in the same room” reveals Jones.
After releasing Live less than two years ago, the frequent resident of Billboard’s Top 10 Blues charts and roots radio favourite continues to accelerate his career momentum to new heights, whether it’s as a personally-requested sit-in with the likes of blues legend Buddy Guy, opening for blues-rock icons Johnny Winter and George Thorogood or entertaining thrilled audiences in 23 countries and four continents.
In addition to his touring band, Will Laurin (drums, harmony vocals) and Jacob Clarke (upright bass, electric bass, harmony vocals), Jones brought longtime band-mate Jesse Whiteley back into the fray to play keys and write some of the horn charts. Kaz Kazanoff of the Texas Horns penned horn arrangements for two of Jones’s original songs from his home in Austin between dates with Jimmie Vaughan.
“My wife Brit sings harmonies on several tracks, and it really brings a classic vibe to the jump blues numbers.” And just to add a little twist, there is even a vocal sample performed by Jones’ 15-month old daughter
Release Date: August 14, 2020
Sonic Departures Tracklist
- Blue Jean Jacket
- Same Mistakes
- Ain’t Gonna Beg
- Drowning On Dry Land
- Bye Bye Love
- Snatchin’ It Back
- It’s Obdacious
- Things That I Used To Do
- When It All Comes Down