Jamey Johnson: One of the Best
Jamey Johnson is one of my favorite artists out there right now (despite not having a full album release since 2010’s The Guitar Song) because he never strays from a classic country sound and truly impeccable songwriting. It has been reported that many factors between a suffering a concussion and being locked into an unfair contract have led to the long delay in releasing anything new, although he still tours often – I’ve seen him three times in the last four years alone. One thing I will always remember is when he pulled up to a gig at Joe’s Bar in Chicago and he parked his huge pickup truck right next to the entrance instead of pulling up in the tour bus. His stage presence includes a focus on the music and less on stage banter, and that’s alright with me. He played In Color around the halfway mark of his marathon set of over 2 hours and half of the place cleared out, probably because they didn’t know enough of his other stuff. That worked out for Steve and I as we then were able to be within 10 feet of the stage for the rest of his set and it’s still a top 5 concert I’ve ever seen.
Most people know In Color, which is off of the album That Lonesome Song, as it is probably his most commercially successful song, hence why all the people left the concert after hearing it. However it is the title track off that album that I end up playing the most for myself. “What the hell did I do last night, that’s the story of my life” he bellows as the dobro and guitar begin to pick up, “I’m humming on that lonesome song again” takes you into the heart of the song. A song about being on the road, lost and searching for meaning, but unable to find satisfaction as he travels. It’s one of those songs that might be overlooked by the casual fan, but it, and the rest of that album for that matter is just as gripping as In Color. If you have missed Jamey coming through town or have yet to dig into his albums, go ahead and check them out. You will not be disappointed.