andrewjackson.
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andrewjackson.

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Discography

2009: Feral Familiar, playing at campus stations nationwide, contact renan@bentpenny.ca for details.

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Bio

andrewjackson. is the brainchild of J. Andrew -- a Toronto-born songwriter who began playing
guitar at the age of twelve and writing songs as a teenager. Being exposed to a collection of
essential music from a young age, J developed a deep passion for albums that inspired him
towards a career in music. With influences ranging from classic rock to eighties electronic,
Mozart to Albert King, and James Brown to Jeff Buckley, his eclecticism and life experiences
have solidified into a strong debut LP, entitled Feral Familiar.
“I’m the youngest in my family, and growing up in the eighties exposed me to a lot of great
music," says J. "There was music playing constantly in the house, and we had so many cool
records. My favorite was The Cult’s Electric. I’m also heavily influenced by early rock n’ roll,
especially Chuck Berry, I mean who isn’t? I play the same guitar he did.”
All fifteen tracks on Feral Familiar are original and written by J himself. He describes his
writing process as being “completely different for each song”: the track “Mother Nature” was
composed inside of his head while his strumming arm was in a sling, “Eugene Nixon” is the
result of piecing together sounds and ideas that had accumulated on his pocket recorder, and
“Hold On” was written in a flash while sitting with his guitar looking out at the rain. Also a
painter, J compares songwriting to his other passion: “When you paint, you slowly add layers
until the work finds its form. Songwriting, for me, is a very similar process”
Those layers have a unique sonic presence on Feral Familiar, which was recorded live off the
floor between Iguana Studios in Toronto and The Factory in Vancouver. J worked with notable
producer John Nazario (Nelly Furtado, Jack Johnson, The Tea Party) to help bring his vision
of a crusading rock record to life. The result is a debut that encapsulates the themes of
freedom, revolt and spirituality, while impugning the political climate of West. Energetic and
urgent, Feral Familiar has a raw, almost vintage production reminiscent of The White Stripes.
J’s interest in world politics and the history of civilizations have prompted trips to Europe,
Indonesia, Thailand (where he rocked a very inspired solo version of “Mother Nature” during
an open stage), Mexico and South America. He says, “it’s interesting to see how other
cultures live and where the modern world took its cues. I remember being overwhelmed by an
intense spiritual energy while exploring the Aztec Pyramids and gazing into a massive ancient
burial pit. I then felt a sort of capitalistic irony when I turned around and walked twenty feet
to buy a popsicle. People are brainwashed into being apathetic about politics and it's
unfortunate because you can't just run from it, it turns up everywhere." It was during his
travels that J had a vision to transpose these feelings and create a legendary rock record
filled with political assessment and insight.
Returning to Ontario in early 2009, J wrote a handful of new songs while staying alone in a
cabin on the frozen barrenness of Georgian Bay. During those few weeks of solitude he
conceived of his new songs (“Eugene Nixon,” “Enough Blood To Keep 'Em Coming,” “Another
Day Of Misery'” and “Big Baby”) as the core of the album. With their politically charged lyrics
and radio friendly melodies, this was an easy choice. Together, the songs – and four well
placed interludes – flow seamlessly from the start of the record to the end, much like some of
the great rock records of the seventies. Feral Familiar is an awakening journey, a lucid
behind the scenes look at the struggles between freedom and corruption within our species.
Hidden within the wordplay, surging guitars and driving rhythms, there lies a combination to
unlock minds and inspire a new philosophy.
“If there is one thing I would like my music to do for the listener...it would be to inspire action.”