John Vester | All the Way Out West

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United States - California - LA

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Folk: Folk-Rock Country: Western Moods: Type: Acoustic
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All the Way Out West

by John Vester

Folk/Americana accentuating the western side of country & western with a colorful variety of ethnic influences, lyrically ranging from funny to romantic to irreverent to random thoughts.
Genre: Folk: Folk-Rock
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Lucky You
3:24 $0.99
2. Put All Your Heart in a Song
3:18 $0.99
3. Night Becomes the Day
2:40 $0.99
4. Blue Window
3:16 $0.99
5. As Long As It Takes
2:34 $0.99
6. All the Way Out West
2:55 $0.99
7. Beeswax Is My Beeswax
2:34 $0.99
8. Warm & Tender Lullabye
3:07 $0.99
9. I Wish I Was Back Home in Cincinnati
4:06 $0.99
10. Please Don't Be So Sad
3:32 $0.99
11. No Bone to Pick With Jesus
3:27 $0.99
12. Sometimes Absence Makes the Heart Grow
3:39 $0.99
13. The Devil's Playground
2:55 $0.99
14. I Don't Want to Say Good-bye
4:11 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
John Vester: All The Way Out West

On John Vester’s 4th solo release on Venetian Records (2008): All The Way Out West this artist fully comes into his own. This collection continues John’s trademark, poetic picture painting style of songwriting, based on Folk Americana, accentuating the western side of country & western, with a colorful mix of ethnic influences, while moving into new territory lyrically & reaching new heights of musical self-realization.

Originally from Cincinnati, Ohio John started writing songs & playing in bands there in his teens. Then he moved to California in his early 20s & attended the Grove School Of Music in LA, while playing in bands & developing his craft as a songwriter…until he was ready to start recording…

His first album, My Heart Is In Your Hands was released in 1998. His 2nd Half A World Away in 2002 & his 3rd Things I Wish I Would Have Said in 2004. Like the previous 2 solo JV releases All The Way Out West was co-produced with Michael Lennon of the band Venice, with excellent vocal support from other Venice member Mark, Kipp & Pat Lennon & vocalist extraordinaire Kate Markowitz.

Also featuring the top-notch musicianship of Greg Leisz on pedal steel guitar & dobro, Sid Page on violin & Scott Crago on drums to mention a few…

John says: “I think of many of my songs as cowboy songs, but mainly I think of them as love songs, story songs, uplifting, sad or funny songs….or some combination of all the above.”

He is also an illustrator & the All The Way Out West cd package features his singular style of hand printed lyrics & original illustrations making this a truly unique offering of this artist’s words, music & art.

John’s songs give us ways to look at ourselves both playfully & seriously, with a maturing attention to artistic detail & form that promises All The Way Out West is his best work to date.

John Vester lives all the way out west in Venice, California USA.

All The Way Out West track descriptions:

Track 1 Lucky You tells a tale of what it means to be lukcy, in the words of an odd cast of characters met on the road---hitch-hiking north from Georgia up through Tennessee into Kentucky….& promotes the feeling that maybe you (the listener) ain’t had it so bad after all…punctuated perfectly by the amazing Greg Leisz on pedal steel guitar.

Track 2 Put All Your Heart In A Song was inspired by several lines of poetry originally attributed to Mark Twain. The depth & simplicity of the original lyrical germ from Mr. Twain incites the raga like one chord India vibe of the interlude & verses, breaking into an exuberant, slightly psychedelic, thumping Beatle-esque chorus, that invites you to live your life to the fullest. The track begins with the buzzing drone of a tambura, then the band kicks in with a spirited, minimalist combining of east & west, commanded by the scarily great violin of Sid Page.

Track 3 Night Becomes The Day continues the tradition from the previous 2 John Vester releases, of including a song that combines western folk guitar & traditional Japanese instruments, compositionally threading the needle between east & west, thus revealing the underlying similarity between simple Japanese melodies & western cowboy songs.

Track 4 Blue Window is an internet love song that captures the romance of falling in love song distance, through the virtual magic of the computer’s blue window.

Track 5 As Long As It Takes is a rootsy little acoustic prayer of undying resolve to be patient & persistent in love “til’ your heart reveals what is meant to be”

Track 6 The title track All The Way Out West is a surf cowboy anthem, celebrating the artist’s hometown for the last 20 years: Venice, Ca. USA.

Track 7 Beeswax Is My Beeswax grooves along like an old blues classic, & lyrically reveals a new layer of whimsy & wit for this artist.

Track 8 Warm & Tender Lullabye combines warmth & tenderness artfully accented with the heavenly pedal steel harmonics of Greg Leisz in a mellow, soothing track designed to lull even the most agitated listener to dreamland.

Track 9 I Wish I Was Back Home In Cincinnati rolls back the years & uncovers the artist’s earliest midwestern memories in this heartfelt homage to his original hometown “like a Stephen Foster tune played on calliope”

Track 10 Please Don’t Be So Sad is a sincere effort to cheer up the listener with a plaintive minimal track, sadly sweetened by the very spare & sensitive violin of Sid Page.

Track 11 No Bone To Pick With Jesus is a religious tolerance piece, with humor, in the form of a lively gospel bluegrass number that asks: “Please don’t kill me just because I don’t believe what you do, why can’t we let each other believe in what we choose to?”

Track 12 Sometimes Absence Makes The Heart Grow explores an ancient English folk genre in a bleakly sad sounding moral fable (w/underlying tongue in cheek humor lyrically) authenticly augmented by the haunting violin of Sid Page.

Track 13 The Devil’s Playground is a cryin’ in yer beer cowboy song that would sound good blaring from the jukeboxes in the cowboy bars of Jackson Hole, Wyoming, accompanied by the awesome dobro of Greg Leisz.

Track 14 I Don’t Want To Say Good-bye fades in & out with stirring strains of uillean pipes, evoking images of the artist’s Irish American ancestry, ironically ending this collection & saying good-bye though he clearly doesn’t want to.



to write a review


Great music!
I love the story telling of these songs, as well as the interesting use of unexpected instrumental moments. The musicianship is excellent and the harmonies blend so well. A very good body of work that deserves to be heard! What\'s next???

Lia Kinnet-Abts, Belgium

All The Way Out West ….
in Every Single Way impressive et MAGNIFIQUE !!! Leaning on his classic traditional folky country roots in a most personal and modern way, more relaxed and self-assured than ever, a 100% typical John Vester takes us on his trip through his Country, his life, his heart. In a 100% typical American multi-cultural Sound he brings us Californian sunshine, smiles and grins in splendid swinging up-tempo’s, or gently wipes our little tears away with tender little chansons. Lyrics, poetry, tunes and melodies as only John Vester can write, pun, and pling from his guitar (cfr. “We’re Still Here” and all those magnificent songs he co-wrote with Venice), a noticeable diversity and beautiful mix in styles and genres, in superdeluxe arrangements sous la direction de Maestro Michael Lennon. Godly guitars, couleur locale by splendid pedal steel, super drums-percussion-bass-accordion-and-all-kinds-of-stuff, Japanese touch by je-ne-sais-quoi, heavenly stirring violin, and outstanding harmony vocals by Mark Lennon and Kate Markowitz. Up-tempo highlights = “I Wish I Was Back Home In Cincinnati” a touching nostalgic detailed swinging Painting and Ode to his former Hometown; title track “All The Way Out West” a singalong phenomenon with all the Lennons from the Californian band Venice as an Ode to California and its incomparable Sun. Smile-provoker Highlights = funny bluesy “Beeswax Is My Beeswax”, ditto playful “The Devil’s Playground“, and most of all this mighty “No Bone To Pick With Jesus” in which he voices anti-religious fanaticism and pro-tolerance in a most genial disarming way. Lullabyes and heart-touchers highlights = “Put All Your Heart In A Song”; “Warm & Tender Lullabye”; “As Long As It Takes” (in which he reminds me of unforgettable good ol’ Donovan); “Sometimes Absence Makes The Heart Grow”; “Please Don’t Be So Sad” as a warm cozy eiderdown filled with soothing sounds, in which he whispers a most comforting encouraging lovely little lachrymose into your ears, and this melancholic smooth fluent “I Don’t Want To Say Good-bye” as adieu. The utterly beautiful booklet (illustrated by Mr. Vester Himself with his incomparable watercolor artwork and his own outstanding characters, and very well-chosen pictures of/in the colors of the earth and the sunsetting sky) enfolds these songs, this music, this Heartist ánd his audience as one ensemble. CHAPEAU and Standing Ovation !!!

Peters at CD Baby

With a seemless blend of Eastern and Western influences, John Vester has created a delightful, thought-provoking album that\'s reminiscent of George Harrison and Rufus Wainwright. Vester has Harrison\'s knack for serpentine, sinewy melodies that are wonderfully melodic, yet crafted with enough skill that you\'ll love to listen to the album on repeat a few times, so that you can sing along. \"Put All Your Heart in a Song\" features a droning tambura, wiry violin, and some backwards guitars, all working together to give it a distinctly psychedelic folk/rock, late 60s feel. The first five songs on the album continue with the middle-eastern vibe, but the album takes a bit of a turn on the title track, which is straight up countrified Americana, with layered chorus harmonies, like we might hear from the Traveling Wilburys. From there, the album continues with a stronger western feel, with harmonica, pedal steel guitar, and luscious harmonies on songs like \"Warm & Tender Lullabye\", while \"I wish I was home in Cincinnati\" feels like an early 70s Dylan track, in the best way. We find dobro, violin, accordion, and even bagpipes adorning the rest of the album, and the rich diversity of instruments help convey the east-meets-west feeling of the album. Vester\'s vocals have an honest, earnest
quality that is, again, reminscent of the latter days of George Harrison. It sounds like Vester has spent a good amount of time honing his craft, and this album deserves to be listened to.