Jaryd Lane – The Drifter (EP)

Screen Shot 2016-01-24 at 19.22.36Every now and again when sampling the options on the musical menu you come across something that hits the spot.

Scratch below the surface of the mainstream scene and you won’t take long to find a new band or name that seems to have passed you by. In fact, Jaryd Lane is not actually a new artist.

He has released 6 independent albums and this 7 track EP is mainly acoustic-based.

The research on Lane doesn’t throw up very much. That doesn’t really matter though; you don’t have to know someone’s collar size to know he has a fine voice, writes great songs and plays a mean guitar.

Jaryd is a native of South Louisiana. He released his first album back in 2005, works with a band called ‘The Parish’ and apparently has no great desire to be a country superstar.

How do I describe the sound? Think Bob Seger. Think Will Hoge. Raw, raspy vocals.  We have seven tracks, six mainly acoustic guitar or piano backed and one track “Mile High” which has the full instrumental backing and would be on my A list if I was responsible for a country radio playlist. Sadly for Jaryd Lane, I’m not, and I suspect that this great song will be overlooked.

Most of the offerings here are mid-tempo ballads. Country music as it’s meant to be played – a great vocalist and a guitar. Certainly not pop-country and probably remaining destined to be heard in the local venues, but a certain Mr Stapleton probably thought that too.

There are a number of highlights on offer here. ‘All I Can Do Is Write About It’ features a glorious piano backing and is a clear stand out on the EP. The title track ‘The Drifter’ is raw, pure and is best heard live in the acoustic sets that Lane is lining up called ‘The Living Room Sessions’. A great song. ‘One Step Up’ features the same haunting piano backing again with a Lanes rasping vocals. A beautifully written song with a stunning melody to match.

When researching his back catalogue I came across a review for an album release in 2013. The opening paragraph “it’s fitting that when Jaryd Lane played the Bayou Country Super Fest it was only in the parking lot”. If there really was any justice in this crazy, irrational industry, Jaryd Lane would be able to look back and recall that as a humorous story!

It’s good to discover “new artists”. Even one that has been around for many years.  He has the look, the sound and a very good 7 track EP that deserves to be discovered.