Order 3 or more physical items and get 1¢ shipping
John McGrail | Songs for Troubled Times

Go To Artist Page

Recommended if You Like
Ani DiFranco Billy Bragg Peter Gabriel Sting

Album Links
Mind Fry Enterprise PassAlong Tradebit PayPlay Apple iTunes Bitmunk

More Artists From
United States - Ohio

Other Genres You Will Love
Rock: Modern Rock Folk: Political Moods: Type: Political
There are no items in your wishlist.

Songs for Troubled Times

by John McGrail

Politically motivate Rock with a folk music touch
Genre: Rock: Modern Rock
Release Date: 

We'll ship when it's back in stock

Order now and we'll ship when it's back in stock, or enter your email below to be notified when it's back in stock.
Continue Shopping
just a few left.
order now!
Share to Google +1

To listen to tracks you will need to update your browser to a recent version.

  Song Share Time Download
clip
1. Earthday
3:37 $0.99
clip
2. Sometimes We Just Forget
4:25 $0.99
clip
3. Losing Our Voice
4:21 $0.99
clip
4. Who The Hell Am I?
5:49 $0.99
clip
5. What Would Jesus Say?
4:50 $0.99
clip
6. Just Like Tim McVeigh
3:30 $0.99
clip
7. Red Ball Blue
4:39 $0.99
clip
8. Almost Funny
3:38 $0.99
clip
9. Genocide Johnny
4:22 $0.99
clip
10. Vilify Me
3:53 $0.99
clip
11. Leaders
8:09 $0.99
clip
12. ...
2:02 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
PLEASE NOTE: All Profits from my album sales are given to charity.

If you are a right wing republican type YOU should hear this.

If you are a left wing liberal type you'll probably like it


With the release of "Songs For Troubled Times" John McGrail has taken a step in a new direction. The basis for these songs are social and political. He knows there is often a backlash to that type of approach as witnessed by Linda Ronstadt (that radical bitch) and the Dixie Chicks (those radical bitches) We won't even mention Ani DiFranco (God bless her) but as he has said "At this time in our nation's history I can't imagine just putting something out as entertainment". So there it is. Musically the album is top notch. "If it isn't going to be something that is appealing to the ears then write an essay. It's cheaper and less time consuming"

The songs go from the rocking Losing Our Voice and Almost Funny to the somber mood of Who The Hell Am I", to ominous Leaders to the light hearted "Just Like Tim McVeigh" and much more.
When asked if it wasn't a bit of a risk doing this album John's response was "No a risk is being a soldier in Iraq. Having your butt in harms way because your president wanted to go to war for no good reason... putting out an album a risk?... ha! If only life was filled with such tepid risks."

So who is John McGrail???
John McGrail is a singer songwriter from Cleveland. He has been playing and performing music for 25 plus years. He has opened and for such diverse groups as the Cowboy Junkies, The Proclaimers, Texas and new age artist Larkin, plus he has performed with the Irish superstars The Chieftains and Native American singer songwriter Bill Miller. Plus he has played in Ireland, Europe and Africa. Here is a sampling of what has been said about him.

Of all the anti-Bush records in recent months, John McGrail's Songs for Troubled Times is likely to be the most musically ambitious and lyrically heavy-handed. McGrail pulls no punches and has much to say, but he isn't going to let you get away without doing some thinking of your own; this is protest music that goes beyond sloganeering. Ostensibly a folk singer, McGrail is all over the place stylistically; folk takes a backseat to hard rock, alternative rock, and country rock. "Earthday," his screed against environmental abuse, is an excellent U2 impersonation, and "Sometimes We Forget" will have listeners over 50 remembering the Byrds' classic 1967 "Notorious Byrd Brothers." Two bouncy tunes, "Genocide Johnny" and "Just Like Tim McVeigh," are McGrail's most obvious, as is the metal-flavored "Almost Funny." This won't appeal to everyone, but it shouldn't be ignored.
Steve Byrne-The Cleveland Scene

Local singer-songwriter John McGrail tackles a lot of socio-political issues on his not-quite-new disc called Songs for Troubled Times. Not only is it his first solo release in almost a decade, he quickly sets out to tell you that not much has changed during that time. Except, perhaps, that he is an even better guitar player and lyricist than the last time you heard ‘em.
Fairly or unfairly, McGrail gets roped into the “folkie” category. Truth is, he has quite the historical handle on a lot of different musical genres—progressive rock, modern jazz, classical, folk, classic rock and world music. And to complicate things even more, he’s one hell of a guitar player who knows how to coax tones out in just the right way.
He gets a lot of rich, crystallized guitar tone on the set opener “Earthday,” which picks at Dubya’s dad even as McGrail himself picks at tone quality the likes of Eric Johnson would be proud of. He switches gears with the following modern rock track, “Sometimes We Just Forget,” which would make a fine bedfellow for the recent Push Stars disc.
It’s when McGrail really turns up the heat on the political issues that he tends to earn those folkie armbands he’s probably grown used to wearing. Not that it’s a bad thing. Tunes like “Losing Our Voice,” “Almost Funny,” “Just Like Tim McVeigh” and “What Would Jesus Say?” are weighted with folk rock leanings and rather obvious intent.
And then there’s “Genocide Johnny,” a song that McGrail wrote about a fictional (or not?) co-worker “jerk” who myopically wants to destroy all Muslims. “He said, ‘I’m proud to be an American because we’re always right/War is good so long as we get to pick the fight,’” McGrail growls, linking this particular Johnny to Saddam Hussein.
Maybe somewhere in Cleveland, McGrail has voice mails saved from Michael Moore and Bill O’Reilly—one asking him for the rights and one telling him he’s wrong.

Peter Chakerian - Cool Cleveland e-zine



"He's got blockbuster one's (songs), as he showed... not only has a strong, resonant voice, but also knows how to play the guitar." Jane Scott / Cleveland Plain Dealer

"there's an imaginative mind at work here" Anastasia Pantsios/ Notations

"Very impressive. Original and thought provoking."
"A world class player"
"I would recommend (him) to everyone who likes adventurous music and any one who likes 'folk' music." CD Baby Reviews

Read more...

Reviews


to write a review

elton fontaine

I'm surprised but this is perhaps the finest independent release i have ever hea
Every song on here is outstanding. If you don't agree with his politics it might put you off (ie repubican fascist types) but the music is amazing. We need more gutsy artists like John McGrail on the horizon. the music industry is filled with too many eunichs.
Read more...

steve byrne-The Cleveland Scene

Protest music that goes beyond sloganeering.
Of all the anti-Bush records in recent months, John McGrail's Songs for Troubled Times is likely to be the most musically ambitious and lyrically heavy-handed. McGrail pulls no punches and has much to say, but he isn't going to let you get away without doing some thinking of your own; this is protest music that goes beyond sloganeering.
Ostensibly a folk singer, McGrail is all over the place stylistically; folk takes a backseat to hard rock, alternative rock, and country rock. "Earthday," his screed against environmental abuse, is an excellent U2 impersonation, and "Sometimes We Forget" will have listeners over 50 remembering the Byrds' classic 1967 "Notorious Byrd Brothers." Two bouncy tunes, "Genocide Johnny" and "Just Like Tim McVeigh," are McGrail's most obvious, as is the metal-flavored "Almost Funny." This won't appeal to everyone, but it shouldn't be ignored.
Read more...

fred swanson

Awesome. The Sun was great but this is 10 times better
When I saw he had another album out I was curious. This one rocks more than his first but it is superior to an outstanding first effort. I hope he gets into the studio soon because he seems to be really hitting his stride musically.
Read more...

Natalie Hayes

Rocks more than The Sun but just as good
I bought his first CD and was pleasantly surprised. this is just as good but as the description says it is a new direction. I hear a little U2, some Billy Bragg, Peter Gabriel, but these are just influences, his sound is all his own. And what a voice...
Read more...

Nomar

Great musicianship, songwriting fueled by Guiness.
Genious,Guiness. Which came first? The song or the swig? Great musicianship and writing. Who's this Genocide Johnny? Do I know him?
Nomar in Cleveland.
Read more...

Peter Chakerian

Maybe somewhere in Cleveland, McGrail has voice mails saved from Michael Moore a
Local singer-songwriter John McGrail tackles a lot of socio-political issues on his not-quite-new disc called Songs for Troubled Times. Not only is it his first solo release in almost a decade, he quickly sets out to tell you that not much has changed during that time. Except, perhaps, that he is an even better guitar player and lyricist than the last time you heard ‘em.
Fairly or unfairly, McGrail gets roped into the “folkie” category. Truth is, he has quite the historical handle on a lot of different musical genres—progressive rock, modern jazz, classical, folk, classic rock and world music. And to complicate things even more, he’s one hell of a guitar player who knows how to coax tones out in just the right way.
He gets a lot of rich, crystallized guitar tone on the set opener “Earthday,” which picks at Dubya’s dad even as McGrail himself picks at tone quality the likes of Eric Johnson would be proud of. He switches gears with the following modern rock track, “Sometimes We Just Forget,” which would make a fine bedfellow for the recent Push Stars disc.
It’s when McGrail really turns up the heat on the political issues that he tends to earn those folkie armbands he’s probably grown used to wearing. Not that it’s a bad thing. Tunes like “Losing Our Voice,” “Almost Funny,” “Just Like Tim McVeigh” and “What Would Jesus Say?” are weighted with folk rock leanings and rather obvious intent.
And then there’s “Genocide Johnny,” a song that McGrail wrote about a fictional (or not?) co-worker “jerk” who myopically wants to destroy all Muslims. “He said, ‘I’m proud to be an American because we’re always right/War is good so long as we get to pick the fight,’” McGrail growls, linking this particular Johnny to Saddam Hussein.
Maybe somewhere in Cleveland, McGrail has voice mails saved from Michael Moore and Bill O’Reilly—one asking him for the rights and one telling him he’s wrong.
Read more...

Headley

Awesome, though he's screwed if Bush ever hears it.
Awesome, though he's screwed if Bush ever hears it. He'll be on a Presidential blacklist faster than you can say "Get me a coffee Condi"
Read more...

Ed Stamwell

WOW, the politics are cool but the songs are even better
This is an amazing CD. I think McGrail has an exceptional way with hooks and melodies. I won't even mention his guitar playing... whoops guess I lied. He can rip up the fret board with the best of them. I hear some Zappa and Holdsworth and Gilmour and the Edge and.... It's politcical for sure but in a world where no one wants to offend I don't think McGrail gives a rats ass who he offends. buy this CD it is GREAT (as Tony the Tiger would say)
Read more...

Amos White

Excellent
I saw John play solo at the 2nd Saturday Coffee House in Cleveland. I liked his song "What Would Jesus Say" so much I bought one of these CD's. Let me tell you this is a Great! collection of songs. Didn't know local musicians were capable of this type of brilliance.
Read more...

Bill Fliarg

Wow, saw him live at a coffee shop. this album is even better
I saw him play live at a coffee shop in Cleveland. I bought the album based on his lyrics and attitude but this album is him with full arrangements. The arrangements are just awesome. He took great songs and added great arrangements. His politics might keep some at bay but if you lean left and love great music this is for you.
Read more...