Stuff in the Air That Came Out of Speakers Today #40

I know, I’m on a roll with this stuff…

Jackson C. Frank, The Complete Recordings (Ba Da Bing, 2015)

This should have been on the reissues list for last year (though the 19 previously unreleased tracks are mostly lessers). He has a tragic backstory. But like I say, the most captivating backstory in the world is not what you listen to — you listen to the music. What moves this to the front of the pack is that the remastered sonics are by far the clearest and freshest that I’ve heard. The earlier, more rough and muffled versions kept me from appreciating the peculiar seduction of his singing voice. And, well, you can also hear more of his left-field lyrics and buried burr of torment. One listen will show he was an enormous influence on British renditions of American folk. My last pitch is that while “Blues Run the Game” will forever be in the front room of the front hall for Jackson, “My Name Is Carnival” may be a more fantastic feat of phrase and imagination.

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