Midwest Son

midwest sonAfter all the hints, song previews, whining, expounding, and general lollygagging I’m finally releasing my second album under my own name onto the world.  Midwest Son is here and ready for ears to hear it.  Hopefully it lives up to all my yapping.

Though I am featured on the album artwork, I’m not the “Midwest Son” in question.  Don’t get me wrong, I am a Midwest son.  Born and raised in the Midwest.  Well, certainly the eastern Midwest.  Eastern time zone, daylight savings time, churches, Walmarts, and Low Bobs Discount Tobaccos as far as the eye can see.  I think being from the Midwest creates a certain humor and insight in certain folks from here that east coast and west coast folks don’t have.  We’re in the middle of everything.  Trends, art, fashion, culture…all of those seem to start east or west of us.  Some might find this to be a disadvantage -and when it comes to wanting to see a good concert with not-so well known bands- it can be.  Let’s face it, “Johnny Cougar” country isn’t where up-and-coming indie bands are plotting shows.  But really, that’s a small complaint.  I see being from the Midwest as an advantage.  If you got your ear to the tracks you can hear trends coming from a mile away.  Here in my perch in the cornfields I can see the good stuff from the B.S.  I’ve got time before “the new culture” hits my doorstep to decide whether I think its worth my time or not.  When you’re in the thick of it living in New York, LA, etc…you tend to get blindsided.  You may fall prey to that false excitement.  Caught up in this band, or that filmmaker, or that designer, yadda yadda.  The Midwest is that step back to get a better look.  It creates a common sense barrier from the rest of the country.  It also creates pessimism, sarcasm, and a generally negative outlook on anything “new”.  Ehh, take the good, take the bad.  I’m not saying I wouldn’t want to be closer to New York, Boston, D.C., L.A., San Francisco, or San Diego.  A couple hours drive from any of those would be great.  But I’ve got Chicago here.  I’ve got Indianapolis here.  Louisville is only a 4 to 5 hour drive, as is Cleveland.  I’ve got culture just down the highway.

So what am I trying to say here?  I think I got lost somewhere.  Oh yeah….being from the Midwest allows a unique point of view that you don’t get anywhere else.  You do have the “Bible Belt” folks, for sure.  The Walmart lifers.  The “church 4 times a week” crowd.  But you also have folks like me.  Folks that look around and let it all in.  There’s a certain amount of open-mindedness located in these cornfields that you don’t hear about all that much.  It’s mostly “Guns ‘n God” that you hear about.  Midwest Son is for the other folks.  Guys like Kurt Vonnegut and Hunter S. Thompson(he’s from Kentucky…but northern Kentucky).  Those guys that thought differently.  Saw that things were screwed up and talked about it in a creative, funny, and poignant way.  It’s also about my grandpa to a certain degree.  He was the Midwest son I had in mind when writing that song and naming the album.

I think this is some of my best work.  Let me know what you think.  Or don’t, it’s cool.  We can still be friends regardless.  Plenty of room in my cornfield to hang out and watch oncoming trends.

15 thoughts on “Midwest Son

  1. Hang on, I’ve hung out in cornfields and never seen a trend coming probably because my grandfather was too busy talking about communists.

    This album and the string that preceded them show you’ve worked HARD to get that expertise. That would succeed in Brooklyn, Kinshasa, or Sioux Falls. You’re the key. The Midwest is just the location.


      1. Bonobos are smart. They’d say something like, “That music’s not from Sioux Falls. It’s a different sort of corn field influence. More like Wilco, less like Garrison Keillor.”

        Will you have to finally reveal the real meaning of the ‘J’ in J.Hubner? It’s Jehosaphat, isnt’ it? Jaroslav? Joachim? Jay? On second thought, if Bieber’s experience tells us anything, a little anonymity is good, too.


  2. I like what I’m hearing. The New Kaiser made my smile. The New Americans tranced me out (Amway? Where are you?) in a really good way. Lost at Sea reminded me of one of my favorite forgotten bands: the Lilac Time. The Touch? Still great.

    One really cool feature: I love the way individual instruments have their own “lines”, but collections have “lines” too. It’s like fractals: order and beauty at all levels.


  3. Hello – I didn’t want to say anything until I had a chance to give it a good, proper listen. In fact I was really nervous in case it wasn’t any good – well, nerves over buddy! I am absolutely knocked out by Midwest Son and Mrs 1537 was similarly impressed also. Just impressed by how professional you have it sounding and how well you’re playing on it. ‘Flac Jacket’ is by far my favourite, well maybe equals with ‘Some Other Sun’.

    I’ve no idea how it feels to create music, I envy you that. You must be / should be a proud man. Word up.


    1. That means the world to me. Thanks so much.

      It is a bit nerve racking letting your songs out into the world. I mean, not everyone will dig it, but there’s certain people you hope will. You were definitely one of them. Maybe a citrus guy, too. As far as being proud, I’m extremely proud of these songs. They come from a pretty honest place. It helped I had a good friend jump aboard and master the record.

      So glad you and the Mrs liked it. And what’s interesting is that I sort of imagined you would like ‘Flac Jacket’, if you were to like anything on it. It’s one of the most guitar-heavy tracks I’ve written in a long time. That’s my Blow By Blow track. Mr. Jeff Beck, yo.

      You made my night, 1537!


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