It’s been six years since we last heard from Jakob Dylan, apart from a few one-off contributions to other people’s work. He released an album with The Wallflowers in 2012 (the band’s first in seven years) but nothing since.
I wasn’t thrilled with that Wallflowers release (Glad All Over) but I love pretty much everything they did in the 90s and 2000s. I also love Dylan’s two solo albums, 2008’s Seeing Things and 2010’s Women + Country, on which today’s SOTD appears.
I wanted to write a quick entry on Jakob Dylan’s ‘War is Kind,’ and I was pretty sure I’d never featured it on the blog. But lo and behold, nearly seven years ago, the track was Song of the Day #129. But I won’t let that stop me.
Sitting in for Jakob Dylan is a man identified on YouTube only as swp1230. He’s a talented guitarist and singer who apparently has no interest in making his real name known.
Today’s Random Weekend selection is appropriate for Father’s Day, given the lineage of the featured artist. Happy Father’s Day to my own dad, as well as all of the other fathers out there.
Jakob Dylan put out two solo albums in 2008 and 2010 while The Wallflowers were on hiatus. Both were quiet, largely acoustic folk albums, more like something from Jakob’s dad’s early career than the roots rock of The Wallflowers.
Best Songs of 2010 – Honorable Mentions
Jakob Dylan, who has lived up to his songwriting lineage over several Wallflowers and two solo albums, released a low-key collection of ballads titled Women and Country earlier this year.
I haven’t revisited the album much since I first got to know it because it’s a decidedly somber affair. But song for song it is an assured and meaningful record.
Dylan has settled into a sort of retro folk style that seems influenced more by his father’s influences than by his father’s own music.
After 13 years of recording with The Wallflowers, Jakob Dylan released his first solo album, Seeing Things, in 2008. That album (which I reviewed at the time) was a lovely, low-key acoustic collection of personal and protest songs.
Two years later, Dylan’s follow-up solo effort, Women and Country, has hit shelves (and hard drives) and it makes Seeing Things sound like a Led Zeppelin album.
OK, I’m exaggerating. But Women and Country is a decidedly mellow, sometimes even sleepy album. That said, it is a thoroughly rewarding one that grows richer and more nuanced with every listen.
Today’s song is a sad little anti-war ditty by Jakob Dylan from his recent solo album Seeing Things.
Like his father, Dylan has a way with war songs. And also like his father, he does a nice job not singing about the specific skirmish in which we currently find ourselves. Though it was written during the Iraq war, it could just as easily be about World War II or the Civil War. There is something elemental about the experience of men (and women) at battle that transcends the politics of war.
Poor Jakob Dylan. While his lineage no doubt gave him a leg up in the music business, it has also prevented him from ever really being appreciated on his own merits. And that’s a shame, because he is a truly great artist.
I’m not sure if Dylan’s first solo outing, Seeing Things, marks the end of The Wallflowers. I hope not, because the band has put out several very strong rock albums that are quite different from this stripped down affair featuring mostly just Dylan and his guitar. To reference an artist they’re often compared to, The Wallflowers’ albums are to Bruce Springsteen’s Born in the U.S.A. what Seeing Things is to Springsteen’s Nebraska.