The last post of my Boulder series concludes with one of my favorite artists to introduce to friends for the past three years. Along the lines of Alexi Murdoch, Ray Lamontagne, Iron & Wine, Buckley and Nick Drake, Gregory Alan Isakov is able to intertwine plain lyrics and simple chords that sound anything but. You see, to me, that is what distinguishes an average performer apart from the cacophony of coffehouse performers that I've grown used to. For years I have been trying to explain what it is that draws me toward certain singer-songwriters, but I've never been able to nail it until my friend Matt watched Gregory perform and nailed it. To paraphrase in long-hand, it's when you're watching a singer-songwriter and they make it seem as if there was no indication of a crowd watching the performance and the music they are creating wasn't written down, rehearsed or polished; it's the perfectly written song portrayed with their notes as raw they felt it, not as they think it should be displayed or showcased. These are the performers that make their job look so damn easy. Gregory is one of them. Make sense?
Gregory Alan Isakov was born in South Africa and ended up in Boulder after spending some time in the Philly area. He leads a fairly simple life as a part-time farmer on the beautiful front range foothills just outside of Boulder and on many cloudy days, it's easy to catch him at the coffeehouses that line Pearl Street Mall. After numerous tours, sharing the stage with Rod Y Gab, Ani DiFranco and an upcoming date with Brandi Carlile...and winning the coveted Telluride Troubadour Songwriting competition, it would seem Gregory is primed for the next step. Why hasn't he made it yet? Don't get me started. I'll cross my fingers and hope that this next tour with an etown appearance (that will be heard by well over 100,000 people) may help boost his career.
Could you hear this in the background of Grey's Anatomy?
Gregory Alan Isakov - Garden
Gregory Alan Isakov is in the process of finalizing an album with three songs that I could easily see on prime time television and two that with the right producer, could be on your local radio station. He and his manager allowed me to hear rough cuts of some new songs and I was floored with the potential of where these songs could go...if only. Here is a cut from his last album, That Sea, The Gambler, which can be purchased at any local Boulder record store or here.
Gregory Alan Isakov - The Stable Song