Cris Jacobs’ music is hard to describe accurately. It is a mixture of Americana, rock, soul and folk paired with powerful lyricism and a smooth singing voice, but even that doesn’t describe the experience of listening to one of his songs. His newest album is called “Color Where You Are.”
The album is an intimate look into Jacobs’ recent life. Since most of the songs were written specifically for the album in a short period of time, they all follow his thoughts and emotions during that period of his life.
“The whole ‘Color Where You Are’ theme is a meditation on the present and the beauty of the present situations we find ourselves in,” Jacobs said.
“Color Where You Are” is about life in the moment. It covers themes like love, salvation, political tension and finding peace. Often times, when he writes, themes just come to him based on things he hears about and sees on the news.
“I don’t intend to write political songs,” Jacobs said, “but I can’t help inspired, angered, confused, and working things out in real time while I write.”
Jacobs says what makes this album different from his previous ones is his growing connection with his band. His band made up of Todd Herrington on bass guitar, Dusty Ray Simmons on drums and Jonathan Sloane on guitar. The trust and chemistry they’ve formed after performing for a few years together is evident through the balanced musicality of the instrumentals and vocals on each individual track. The group has a bond that only enhances the music they create.
Inspiration came in many different forms for this album. Most importantly, he was inspired by his two year-old daughter and wife. Having a family has caused him to see the world in a brand new way that has affected his lyricism for the better.
The stand-out song on the album is definitely “Painted Road.” It has a funk-like sound that’s fleshed out with a strong piano bass line and twangy lead guitar. Jacobs’ singing is melodic and original. It’s an all-around good song that’s reminiscent of the classics while still encompassing his individuality.
The album is also self-produced, so the band was closely connected to the finished project. You can hear the difference in the album; the music created for the album is raw and emotional in a way many music producers would just cover up. Despite the the lack of a producer, the music production is technically flawless.
“The album is a more civilized version of our live show,” Jacobs said, “We improvise a lot. It’s a very dynamic show.”
Jacobs will be performing with his band at Stage One on Friday April 5.