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Jon Manners | Rock-A-Day Jonny

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Rock: Roots Rock Rock: Americana Moods: Solo Male Artist
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Rock-A-Day Jonny

by Jon Manners

Acoustic/electric blues-edged Roots-Rock in a modernist vein, both elegant and funky. Guitars, saxophones, mandolin, upright bass, drums and vocals. An original, Rockaday is one of a kind.
Genre: Rock: Roots Rock
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Desperation Looms
4:09 $0.85
2. One Lucky Guy
3:18 $0.85
3. My Dream
4:49 $0.85
4. I'm Having A Party
5:01 $0.85
5. I Can't Dance
3:15 $0.85
6. Dementia
4:51 $0.85
7. You've Got My Number
4:33 $0.85
8. A Willin' Fool
4:19 $0.85
9. Big Dog Day
3:05 $0.85
10. Coulda Shoulda
3:07 $0.85
11. He's So Hopeless
4:06 $0.85
12. Let's Be Impulsive
3:06 $0.85
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
There's no sampling on this project, all instruments are real and played by people. The percussion was done by the great Steve Jennings. I play everything else. Guitars, saxophones, upright bass, and mandolin are all me. I do all the vocals and songwriting. The guitars I use are ones I've built.

I've been doing this music thing a long time, ever since I was eight. It looks like I'm a lifer! This is my most fully realized project, I had the use of 24 channels and could do pretty much anything I wanted. And so I did. I've always been out in left-field musically. I found early on that I was best when I did my own thing. I "do" me better than I "do" someone else. I think it was Roseanne Cash who said that 'style is a function of one's limitations.' Now isn't that's a cool insight. Well, I've sure got a lot of style! :)

I started young and developed my own vocabulary, it's an organic approach with a slow build. It's the route I took rather than imitating or copying others and then trying to string it all together. Sure, I have influences, but I've tried not to lean too heavily or specifically on them. What's my niche? Who do I fit in with? I've always thought I'd get along fine with John Hiatt, and Tom Waits. I think John Hammond would appreciate me though we are actually rather dissimilar. He is steeped in tradition and I only use that in passing. My music as well as my lyrics may be somewhat 'different', I am me after all, but they aren't all that abstract or hard to get at, It's been a natural progression.

Ah, the lyrics, I have learned a lot from Carl Hiassen as well as Elmore Leonard. Does that seem odd? Actually I tried my hand at writing a crime-fiction novel and it was a valuable lesson in developing characters and story-lines. Condensing a story into 4 minutes isn't as difficult as you'd think, you can pack a lot into 4 minutes. It's like telling a joke, a joke only runs on for a short spell...

I've often wondered where I'd be if the deal with Rolling Stones producer Andrew Loog Oldham back in the early '70's hadn't tanked. I think there's a fair chance I wouldn't still be playing. As it worked out, I've never had to compromise my music. (Well, except for that brief spell when I played in a wedding band!) In the end, I do what I do for me. And that's the secret to longevity in music. But I've got to say it is REALLY nice when other people like it...



to write a review


Jon Manners new album titled “ Rock-A-Day-Jonny” bursts of enthusiasm, taking you on a joy ride of unpredictable twists and turns, both melodically and lyrically. You are never sure of where he is going to take you. Because you are too involved in the imagery of it all, to question the driver.
The album begins with a song of youth and passion titled “Desperation Looms”, with it’s looney tune feel, Frank Zappa-esq quirkiness and almost Klezmer horn riffs, with perfectly accentuated guitar chords and mandolin backing.
This album doesn’t let up;
Track 2 is a bluesy tune called “One Lucky Guy “ with a relentless Muddy Water like riff that appears and re-appears, leading to a bass and drum driven, mysterious swagger, that evokes the image of the singer telling his story in a Detective Hat and Overcoat under a single stage spotlight. Jon’s use of the saxophone and guitar riff backing, adds to the intrigue.
Track 3 “ My Dream” gives you a reprieve and maybe a hammock, with it’s beautifully played Spanish guitar and smooth vocals. The tone and fluidity of the way he sings the lyric “ over and over” is unmatched in any genre.
Track 4, “I’m Having A Party” is a feel good infectious “ Bring On The Lucy” style tune that flows as naturally as the warm breeze on a hot summer night. The clack of the rhythm guitar riffs just plays and replays seamlessly, as well as the bright sax solo. I love the way the words embrace with a heartfelt sincerity of the perfect host.
Track 5 “ I Can’t Dance” ironically is quite danceable, in the 1950’s sense of the word, with it’s Rock’ Roll Sax and rhythm.
Track 6 “ Dementia” is haunting in story and harmony. The mandolin and acoustic guitar backing laced with a “Watching The Detectives” Guitar Sound but with a twist of a New Years Eve with Guy Lombardo Horn section is nothing less than genius.
Track 7. “ You’ve Got My Number” reignites the “ X” factor of this whole album shrouded in mystery. I wonder if he ever considered calling the album “ X”?
Track 8 “ Willin’ Fool” serves as a reprieve from the intensity with its rock’n’roll club band feel and really good choice of guitar sounds.
Track 9 “ Big Dog Day” is a sweet romantic ballad about what is really important in life despite the problems of the day to day.
Track 10 “ Coulda Shoulda “ is a self-analysis rock ballad, Jon looking back and questioning his actions and asking himself; If he was too self centered? Those New Years Eve at The Waldorf Astoria Horns returns again to conclude this session.
Track 11 “ He’s So Hopeless” starts with a country swing feel but with many unexpected changes and genres. It’s as if Jon took his entire vinyl record collection and broke every record and randomly picked up the pieces and glued them back together into a new fresh sound.
Track 12 “ Let’s Be Impulsive” is an upbeat romantic ballad with great lines like “ You’re sweeter than money, and you think my jokes are funny”.
The liner notes reveal that Jon Manners plays all the instruments and vocals except for the drums played brilliantly by Steve Jennings. The pristine Mastering executed by his brother Mike Manners.
Jon Manners album“ Rock-A-Day-Jonny” is far better and more inspired, than anything Elvis Costello, or Bruce Springsteen has done in recent years. If you only buy ONE INDI Artist album this year, make it “Rock-A-Day Jonny.”

Raymond Coudret

Jon Manners Channels
From the flamenco/classical feel of "My Dream", to the infusion of surf guitar in "I Can't Dance", Jon Manners has put together a collection of music that simultaneously draws from, builds upon, and pays homage to a musical life well lived. Highlights include the big band inspired horn infusion of "Desperation Looms", the aforementioned "I Can't Dance", "My Dream" and the hopeful Neo-Carribean mix of "I'm Having A Party".