In the outskirts of Dallas Texas, Grey Jacks was born. He was playing the piano and ukulele at a young age. Home schooled by his mother, a former Dallas school teacher, his musical interests were encouraged from the start. Middle school introduced brass instruments and in high school bass and guitar joined the mix, which led to singing then songwriting.
College began at a Virginia music school and ended in the heart of Middle Tennessee, where in a matter of months Jacks began slinging lead guitar and keys with the indie-rock powerhouse Glossary, joining them on their 2nd, 3rd and 4th albums. The band toured throughout half the country, including sets at SXSW and CMJ.
Moving into Washington, DC in early 2009, it wasn’t long before writing began, fueled by the freedom from Music City and the climate of the Capital city. In 2012, with the help of longtime friend Phantom Farmer, the two began tracking 15 of Grey’s original songs in Nashville. The pair soon moved lakeside near Sparta, TN in 2013 and the finished product is an impressive first release. Greg decided he wanted to record a bunch of vocals closer to home here at Mobtown with Mat Leffler-Schulman including the vocals for this video.
The albums sound is full of talented Nashville players with the main band comprised of Matt Moody (By Lightning, Hands Down Eugene), D. Patrick Rodgers (And The Relatives), William Tyler (Lambchop, The Silver Jews), and Mr Jimmy Matt Roland (Caitlin Rose, Bobby Bare Jr, Glossary). With strings by Larissa Maestro and Eleonore Denig of the band Poly, haunting vocals by Serai Zaffiro and siblings Jordan & Alex Caress (Little Bandit), and tinged with horns by the Nashville Brass, you arrive at a sound both warm and brilliant.
The project was dubbed the Grey A and the 1st release, titled “My Country“, has lyrical content touching on issues from science to sin. The phrase “Grey A”, unknown to many, is a clinical term used to describe those who identify as neutral or asexual. The narrative voice attempts to remain in a neutral space and is described as the new sound of a middle ground.
With power pop influences of Big Star and Crowded House tied to the rock grit of Neil Young the sound is both fresh and familiar. My Country was released September 2nd, 2014 to positive reviews from No Depression and NPR. The DC based band, which features Andrew Michael Holden on drums and Howard Rabach on bass, and Kevin Dudley on guitar is performing now around the US of A with the album available online and for sale on this website.
Guitar and vocals by Grey Jacks
Engineered by Mat Leffler-Schulman