I am so excited to announce the release of my newest album, “The Coming of the Years.”
If you have not yet ordered the CD, you can still do so via:
I some ways, this album began in 2007, when I first traveled to Ireland and wrote a song there inspired by my travels in my Granddad Felix Kilbride’s homeland. Since then I have been visiting and touring Ireland almost annually, bringing more dimension to my dual U.S./Irish citizenship. I want my relationship with Ireland to be more than an artifact of family history. I want that to be an integrated part of my life, ongoing. To that end I am planning more trips to Ireland not just for professional reasons, but to keep following the thread of family history and discovery. I live a peripatetic existence as a touring performer, songwriter, and bard. But that branch of my family has a nearly 400 year history in the same town. Amazing.
With the new CD “The Coming of the Years,” I am for the first time releasing an album born out of these paths of exploration, both internal and external. And the fruits of this labor are more beautiful than I could have hoped. In addition to a fresh batch of original songs, I have included songs written by colleagues and friends who compose brilliantly in a contemporary Celtic voice. Songs by Luka Bloom, Maria Dunn, Kat Eggleston, and Dougie MacLean grace the project as well as a few traditional pieces.
“The Coming of the Years” is a record I am very proud to place in your hands. I recorded my core tracks in my home studio earlier this year. And then my fellow musicians: Hanz Araki (Irish Flute & Whistles), Lissa Scheneckenberger (Fiddle), Shannon Lambert-Ryan (Vocals), Cheryl Prashker (Percussion), and the legendary John Roberts (Concertina), added their unique talents and helped me create a deep sense of place in each song. And my engineering team – Charlie Pilzer and Randy LeRoy at Tonal Park Studios (Takoma Park, MD) helped me stitch the quilt together brilliantly. Start to finish this is an album that stands firmly in the modern Celtic traditions and is still quintessentially a Joe Jencks record.
I am officially releasing the album this week in Ontario, as I am here performing and teaching at the Goderich Celtic Roots Festival, and the Goderich Celtic College. A fitting place to debut this particular recording. And August 1st is the traditional Irish Festival of Lughnasa, the beginning of the harvest season. It seemed an auspicious day to release this specific album!
Here are a few comments from people who have heard the new music.
“Gorgeous! Wherever you come from and wherever you're going, you will find yourself in the songs on Joe Jencks' The Coming of the Years. It's a page-turner of a concept album that pulls the listener through generations of the immigrant experience and extends musical hands and hearts across the ocean. Throughout, Jencks' timeless voice is deep, warm and sweet, but never saccharine. Top-shelf accompaniment and harmonies limn every detail. His new songs align perfectly with the ancient and the familiar to spin a wholly satisfying saga.” ~ Marilyn Rea Beyer - Host, The Midnight Special, WFMT - Chicago, IL
“A great album! With loved ones remembered at every turn, this album is a personal one for Jencks, and one of his best. And with that knowledge, you may expect maudlin. Instead, The Coming of the Years offers a deeper dive than sorrow, profoundly connecting to a rich, complicated and healing river of love. Each of these songs holds a unique key with the power to unlock even the most recessed truth. Held in Joe Jencks’s care and undeniable talent - this set of songs and arrangements are fully realized, freeing Jencks to embody century-old laments and deftly carry forward contemporary sounds of his own. ” ~ MarySue Twohy, Program Director, SiriusXM
“With his meticulous care, craftmanship and exquisite sensitivity, Joe Jencks has once again blessed us with a thoughtful and stunningly beautiful collection. Themed from the shaping of his own heritage, Joe in his typically generous way encourages each of us to explore and reflect on where we’ve come from. Haunting, melancholy, hopeful and heartfelt all at once, Joe’s gorgeous baritone brings new perspective to the traditional, honour and homage to those written by others, and breathes life to his originals. Goes wonderfully with either a quiet cuppa or a wee dram.” ~ Suze Casey, Artistic Director, Calgary Folk Club
“Interspersing his own songs inspired by visits to Ireland to explore his heritage with carefully chosen covers and traditional pieces, Joe Jencks weaves a tapestry of love, immigration, history, and Irish pride. The instrumental arrangements support the vocals tenderly, giving Jencks' deep warm voice space to bring the lyrics to the fore. The Coming of the Years is an audio treat and a history lesson.” ~ Paul Hartman, Host of "Detour” WTMD - Baltimore, Founder -Dirty Linen Magazine
I want to thank all of you who have already ordered the CD. Your support has made this possible. My initial fundraising goal was $15K. I sent one email in June and made one Face Book post, and you all funded the project to the 90% level in just one week. STUNNING. Then I was off on tour, including two weeks in Ireland. Last Wednesday, I made one more Face Book post about the album, and in one 8-hour period you all funded the project to 105%. AWESOME! THANK YOU. You are the best! Discs are shipping out this week to all who placed orders prior to July 26th. Orders placed after July 26th will ship after I get home from Canada, roughly August 15th.
Even though the project is “funded,” the site will remain live for a few more weeks. And I have a new goal. I would actually like to raise a total of at least $20K. The addition $5K will help me more effectively promote the album internationally. The sort of music I have written and recorded for this CD is quite popular in various parts of Canada, Australia, and Europe. And I think the spirit of the music will resonate deeply with audiences in many places right now. It speaks of times past, but in allegory it is equally about this very moment in history. As an artist dedicated to my craft and trade, I put so much effort into creating elegant recorded versions of the music, as have my dear colleagues. So, I want to share that finished music with as many people as possible.
If you have already ordered your copy of the album, again I say, THANK YOU! If you have not yet ordered the recording and would like to have this new music in your library, please do order the CD. I can’t wait to share it with you.
The Coming of the Years - IndieGoGo: https://igg.me/at/JoeJencks2022
I also have a multitude of upcoming tour dates across the US and Canada listed on my website: www.joejencks.com. A few highlights of the upcoming shows include:
The Goderich Celtic Roots Festival (August 6-8)
TradMad Music Week at the Pinewoods Camp (Plymouth, MA)
(Saratoga Springs, NY Sep. 16 w/ special guest, friend, and colleague Kray Van Kirk)
Club Passim (Cambridge, MA Sept. 18 w/ Kray Van Kirk)
The Albuquerque Folk Festival (Oct. 9)
Arhaven Concerts (Oct. 23 Bastrop, TX)
The Registry Theater
(Oct. 29 Kitchener, ON w/ beloved friend and colleague, Maria Dunn)
Friday Night Folk (Nov. 11 – New London, CT)
Walkabout Clearwater Coffee House (Nov. 12 White Plains, NY)
Old Sloop Coffee House (Nov. 18 Rockport, MA)
*For regular tour updates please visitthe Tour Dates page at: www.joejencks.com
Thank you for helping me keep the music flowing. I have always been a listener supported musician. And you have graciously helped me do this work full-time for more than 22 years. My promise to you is that I will always give you my best, and in return I ask only that you support the music if you are so moved. I am deeply graced by that support. And I say thank you in the best way I know how, by continuing to give myself to the music and then to give the music to you in live performance and in recorded form. It is a good partnership, and I am grateful.
In Gratitude & Song,
~ Joe Jencks