On Tues Oct 5 8:00 GRIFFIN HOUSE will perform at the Fox Theatre with a SPECIAL GUEST.
"Ultimately, these songs are about spirituality and trying to find your place in the world," Griffin House says of Flying Upside Down (Nettwerk, April 29), an album that dramatically marks the 27-year-old Ohioan's coming of age as an artist of formidable skills. "Specifically, it's the continuing story of what's happening in my life, following the realization that the more specific I am about my own life and things that have happened to me, the more people will feel it universally."
The 13-track collection, filled with intensely personal, richly detailed vignettes of the highs and lows of House's existence, showcases a young artist whose openly emotional singing, poetic lyrics and spiraling melodies recall Jackson Browne circa Late for the Sky. Embedded in Flying Upside Down is a song cycle chronicling the arc of a relationship, from the first kiss ("Let Me In") to the emotionally lacerating moment of truth ("Heart of Stone") and its anguished aftermath (the title song). These psychologically penetrating songs are set against a backdrop of the lives of family members ("Better Than Love," "Hangin' On [Tom's Song]") and friends, including some serving in the Middle East ("I Remember [It's Happening Again]"). Completing the tableau is a pair of spiky, head-clearing rockers ("One Thing," "Good for You").
House describes the recording of Flying Upside Down "a dream come true," thanks in large measure to the drop-dead studio band assembled by producer Jeff Trott (Sheryl Crow), including a pair of Hall of Famers in Heartbreakers keyboard player Benmont Tench and guitarist Mike Campbell. A huge Tom Petty fan, House found it immensely gratifying that these great players related so strongly and brought so much to his own music. Also making major contributions were Beck's longtime bass player, Justin Mendal-Johnson, drummer Victor Indrizzo (Macy Gray, Aimee Mann, Daniel Lanois) and violinist Sara Watkins (Nickel Creek).
Last August, on CBS Sunday Morning, critic Bill Flanagan raved about House's first album, Lost and Found, putting the newcomer on his short list of the best emerging songwriters in the U.S., alongside Ray LaMontagne and Joseph Arthur. "I bought [House's] CD [after a show in New York City]," said Flanagan, "and this never happens: I took it home and must have listened to it 20 times that weekend. I was knocked out."
House signed with Nettwerk in 2004 and banged out Lost & Found with his band in five days, before moving from Nashville to Cincinnati. He spent most of the subsequent three years on the road, supporting Ron Sexsmith, Patti Scialfa, Josh Ritter, John Mellencamp and Mat Kearny, while also finding time to record several "direct-to-fan" releases, a pair of EPs (House of David Vol. 1 & 2) and the 2006 digital release Homecoming.
All Ages / GA / $15 adv / $17 DOS On sale July 16
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