Joseph Parsons

Joseph Parsons

 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
BandRockSinger/Songwriter

Vocal. Acoustic Rock. SingerSongwriter. Inspirational, charismatic with a healthy dose of dark and light moods. Bombastic, bluesy, funky and even straight ahead.

Biography

On August 29, 2008, Joseph Parsons released his 7th studio CD, ‘Heavens Above’. Made in the inspired musical cities of Philadelphia and Paris, Parsons has delivered his most ambitious work to date.

Followers of Parsons' recorded music will notice some changes this time around as the collection hues closer to the intensity and honesty of his live shows. After a year of emotional chaos: burying his father & leaving his American homeland to live in Europe, Joseph realized that these specific songs needed to be recorded. “Most of these are newer songs I thought would never see the light of day,” says Parsons. “These are songs that in the past I would have been afraid to record for some reason or another. Songs that leave me feeling very exposed.”

Parsons reflected on his previous work and felt it was time to make an unambiguous artistic statement. “For years, I have messed around, production & song - wise, as a way to avoid the simple truth that my songs may not be as mainstream or as widely accepted as I and some people around me had hoped. And finally, I am comfortable with that. These new songs are from the heart and at this time in my life, that's what matters most.”

It is a fearless record.

Parsons goes on to say, “I had gone as far as I could go in terms of producing my own records. After ‘The Vagabond Tales’ (2005 Blue Rose Records) and ‘The Fleury Sessions’ (2006 Blue Rose Records), I realized I could not produce this new record alone and needed some additional production talent to gain some emotional distance from the songs. I wanted to make a deeper, more honest record so I brought Devin Greenwood (Norah Jones, Amos Lee) in to help me ‘translate’ the songs. He’s an old friend and I trusted him from the first take. And that's exactly what I needed to feel”. Returning to mix and master the record is Grammy Award winner Phil Nicolo (John Lennon, The Hooters, G-Love.)

Parsons explores his personal challenges and, in so doing, takes his character studies to a whole new level on ‘Heavens Above’. One of the standout tracks, the REM influenced title track 'Heavens Above', follows a roughneck during hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, back into the city to find his family and reflects the chaos he found. ‘Dume Room’ is from a Zuma Beach biker bar that tells the story of a Southern Californian 'troll' (a vagabond with a mysterious aura). ‘Anyone’ is a reflection on losing someone who you grew to rely on as totem or moral guidepost, and how it affects your ability to be the person you are or to become.

If you’ve enjoyed recent albums such as the soundtrack to the movie “Once” (Glen Hansard & Marketa Irglova), “The River In Reverse” (Elvis Costello & Allen Toussaint) or the work of Sufjan Stevens or The Lilac Time, this collection is for you. These are songs that reveal themselves upon repeated listening.
- Sean Timmons, Artistic Director, Appel Farm Festival

Starting September 2008, the ‘Joseph Parsons Band’ will tour Germany, The Netherlands, Austria with a few dates in the USA.

Joseph Parsons’ music is available in Europe on Blue Rose Records, as well as world wide on iTunes. Additionally, Parsons is a founding member of the collective bands ‘4 Way Street’ (Sanctuary Records) and ‘Hardpan’ (Blue Rose Records) and currently splits his time between Europe & Philadelphia.

Discography

iTunes carries most of Joseph Parsons' CD's.
2008 'Heavens Above' (Blue Rose Records)
2007 'Parsons-Thibaud' (Blue Rose Records)
2006 'The Fleury Session' (USA - Independent / Europe - Blue Rose Records)
2005 'The Vagabond Tales' (USA - Independent / Europe - Blue Rose Records)
2003 'Pretzel Park' - 4 Way Street (Sanctuary Records)
2003 'Live' - 'Hardpan' (Blue Rose Records - Europe)
2002 'Hardpan' - Hardpan (Blue Rose Records - Europe)
2000 'Live in Europe' (USA - Independent / Europe - Blue Rose Records)
1999 'Self Titled' (USA - Independent / Europe - Blue Rose Records)
1998 '5am' (USA - Independent / Europe - Blue Rose Records)
1995 'Lies...' (Independent release)
1993 'Live at the Tin Angel' (Independent release)
1989 'Breathe' (Independent release)

Set List

45-150 Minutes
Originals with one or two select covers
(2007 covers: 'Jerusalem' by Steve Earle / 'Jokerman' by Bob Dylan)