MP3 Joel Weir - Worktown
Americana Beauty. Lyrically rich, working class folk accented by sweet harmonies and ambient backdrops.
6 MP3 Songs
FOLK: Modern Folk, ROCK: Americana
Working class, spiritual, eclectic, classic... all words that have been used to describe Joel Weir''s music. Joel''s songs speak of small town america and spiritual searching with the honesty and authority of someone who has lived it. A ten year veteran of the independent music scene, Joel has found a voice in Americana/Roots music. Joel writes in the spirit of such great storytellers as Bruce Springsteen, Steve Earle, and John Prine, with an ear to the pop beauty of Brian Wilson, the Beatles, and Over the Rhine. Joel''s current EP "Worktown" is an ode to his hometown of Crawfordsville, IN.
Joel Weir grew up spinning forty-fives and attending country church. Only half-jokingly will he tell you that those forty-fives, Elton John, the Beatles, and, his parents’ Elvis Presley collection are what saved him from the eighties. As a result, Joel crafts songs that reviewers call “passionate, raw” with “a diversity of influences” and a “personal touch.” Beneath lyrics that tell stories and pine for faith and love, audiences hear strains of genres such as Cat Stevens’ folk and Brit pop lyrics.
As a student of his craft, Joel is committed to the classic song structure that breaks the hearts of the last few generations. “I want listeners to remember the best moments of their lives with my songs in the background. I want to speak directly to anyone who listens to my music.”
Wade Coggeshall - Journal Review
Joel Weir has said he wants people to remember the best moments of their lives with his music playing in the background. It certainly seems to fit the mindset
he must be in when he writes his music. The Crawfordsville citizen''s latest collection of songs is the "Worktown" EP,
which is available for free download on his Web site, https://www.tradebit.com. It''s a set of lush, acoustical arrangements that''s easy to get lost https://www.tradebit.com singer/songwriters can audiolize a portrait of middle America as vividly and with as much quiet passion as Weir. His songs carry a haunting weight and
hopeful message. "There''s so much happening tonight, here in Worktown" is the refrain on this EP. It''s a statement that contrasts with others heard lately on
Weir''s hometown. "Worktown" is a delicate portrayal of small-town life and its inherent treasures. "I hear Latin music, drifting o''er the neighborhood. I hear
people laughing and life feels so very good" he sings on the title track. "Carlos and Juanita" tells of an immigrant couple moving in across the street.
Rather than dwelling on any trials and tribulations such stories may carry, however, Weir instead welcomes them not just to America, but to the town and neighborhood, all with a reverential serenity. Indeed, compositions like "The Lament of PFC Jackson Ross" and "Going Home"
contain no words but etch themselves into your conscious with the potency of a moving picture. The former''s calm is tinged with the distant march of war and the latter carries capricious strumming and a goosebump-inducing harmonizing that seemingly floats. Weir closes "Worktown" with "Forever Lady/Some Men," a love letter to his wife
and ideals. "Here''s to all you lovers and all your loved ones / here''s to all you working people that make this country run / Start a revolution, where peace
and justice reign / Hearts and souls mean so much more than just pieces in a game." With Weir, simple ideas of peace and love seem strangely, easily possible
again. He harkens back to a simpler time, when such statements meant so much.
Concert Review by Kit Malone
Joel Weir @ Abba Moses - 2/28/04
The world is full of songwriters who tackle spirituality. All too often, it''s done with a heavy hand and a giant air of self-superiority. Maybe it''s just me, but overblown protestations of faith set to music always ring a little false. The best, wisest, and truest people don''t need to shout so loud to be heard. Joel Weir is one of these latter -- a man of quiet songs who isn''t spouting easy
answers, and isn''t afraid to pose difficult questions.
About those songs... they have a thick, unmistakably spiritual core -- but it''s not the plastic, grafted-on spirituality of so-called "Christian Rock." The
lyrics relate an experience of grace -- or whatever you want to call it -- that is personal and therefore far more valid. When Weir yearns for salvation, he''s singing for himself and translating internal observation in a way that all of us can understand.
Often, when an artist wanders into the neighborhood of "capital-T-truth" -- the result seems labored and pompous. But Weir remains quiet and humble. Perhaps
that makes it easier for him to deliver "universal" observations about the world. "The last war that you will ever have to fight is for your heart," he
observes, in "The Last War," extolling us to "be who we are." When Joel Weir reworks a moldy old sentiment like this - it doesn''t sound like a cliché. Rather, it sounds like the inevitable response to the question posed by the
song, and by the man singing it.
- Kit Malone