I know, I know… but I may as well say it now, because everyone will be saying it in a few months time (mark my words)… we have now discovered a (Welsh) male Winehouse- and he is called Jay James Picton. And long may he live.
Jazzy, soulful and so utterly pleasurable that his voice will make you weep. One moment his smoky tongue creates a tension that seems to be so insecure and so near to breaking point that you wonder how he manages to hold back the tears – but the next moment his voice becomes so uplifting and joyful that your heart will bounce off the moon. Full of fiery passion and exhilarating rapture, he also demonstrates some grunt and growl that you will not find in any female vocalist. The celebration of finding the ‘God Particle’ should be put on hold, because now we have discovered the ‘Voice of the Universe’. Whoever urged Jay James to pick up a microphone and perform for us should be awarded a Nobel prize for services to popular music.
Backed by a slick and skillful band of utter professionals, Jay James launched into his sparkling set in front of a select gathering of family friends, longtime admirers and excited new fans at the Borderline this Thursday evening.
Oodles of passion greeted the loving audience. He seemed like a man possessed – possessed by a stimulus to grow ever stronger and to create ever more soulful and moving sounds – as he lifted the crowd up as high as he could manage to take them.
‘Long May They Roll’ has an insistent beat that creates such unbelievable tension that you start to tremble. The long, low notes start to scratch your soul and, just when you feel that you will not ever recover from the darkness, the chorus begins to elevate you. Yes, there will be tears. But they will be tears of joy in place of sadness.
Finishing off with the powerful second single taken from his debut album entitled ‘Play It By Heart’, (which will be released on 10th September) this impassioned song grabs your heart-strings and doesn’t let them go until they’re threadbare. And he pulls no punches. He says it just the way it is. The lyrics are meaningful and street-wise. This is all about apportioning blame and creating a hard shell of defence when your heart is broken. And when he sings out in agony, we all know how it feels. And how much it hurts.
An incredible performance by a consummate artist who will, no doubt, take on the world and start to make it shine.
Words & Pictures: © Neil_Mach July 2012