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July 18, 2024

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Jack Johnson
Brushfire Fairytales (Enjoy Records)

By: Alex Steininger

Featuring big name guest Ben Harper, who plays slide guitar on "Flake," a melancholy, yet rollicking folk-rock jam, Jack Johnson's Brushfire Fairytales, the first release on new indie Enjoy Records, is a playful, jam record meets contemplative folk album.

Johnson knows how to write songs. That needs to be understood, and will after one listen to Brushfire Fairytales. His guitar playing can be soft and intimate, like on "The News," a weary, reminiscing folk tale of life and growing up. Or it can be fun and uplifting. "Mudfootall (for Moe Lerner)" is a prime example of that. The Jamaican-esque vocals give the songs a happy vibe, while Johnson's guitar playing just jams away, while the rhythm section gives the song a bouncy, uplifting spirit.

Strong songwriting and the ability to go eclectic while ensuring the listener is never confused, Johnson's Brushfire Fairytales is a solid album, filled with every emotion from sad to happy, depressed to uplifting. He covers all his bases and gives listeners something good for any occasion. I'll give it an A-.15

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