John Sprung | Side Effects

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Folk: Political Folk Country: Modern Country Moods: Mood: Funny
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Side Effects

by John Sprung

If you like urban folk musicians with an edge, whose roots reach back to Pete Seeger, Oscar Brand, Josh White, Phil Ochs and Tom Lehrer, but with an original sound that speaks to TODAY, then John Sprung is very much worth your attention.
Genre: Folk: Political Folk
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. See Alice
2:43 $0.99
2. The Gift
3:51 $0.99
3. Understand the Blues
5:43 $0.99
4. No Time for a Song
2:34 $0.99
5. All Counts for Twenty
2:51 $0.99
6. Joshua
4:39 $0.99
7. The Folk-Singers Sweet Bye-and-Bye
5:16 $0.99
8. Shorthand for Good-Bye
4:24 $0.99
9. 2nd World War Home Front Movie Blues
3:28 $0.99
10. The Ghosts of Columbine
4:09 $0.99
11. Remember Me
5:44 $0.99
12. Social Insecurity
2:25 $0.99
13. The Glory of their Times
4:20 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
John Sprung is a singer/songwriter whose music reflects both our history and our hopes for the future. While many of the issues which face us are serious ones, John believes in balancing these concerns with a sense of humor. His new CD, "Side Effects," was released on Fraternity Records in early August, 2008. As a charter member of what is jokingly called "the great folk scare" of the late 60's and early 70's, John has played with a number of long-forgotten trios and as a solo performer. He has, in addition to several live radio and TV appearances, played numerous venues ranging from college campuses to intimate coffee houses from the Mississippi Gulf Coast to Greenwich Village.

Although a lawyer by profession, John has always tried to keep his day job from interfering with his music. The son of camp-director parents, he literally grew up learning songs around the campfire. While schooled on the music of Woody Guthrie, Josh White, Oscar Brand and the Weavers, John--as "Side Effects" amply demonstrates--has branched out from the early folk songs of his youth to reflect a more eclectic sound.

Unlike his first album, "Remember Me and other Songs," which was a retrospective on close to thirty years of his songs, "Side Effects" is a CD for the 21st Century. All of its songs have been recently written and recorded, with some as topical as today's headlines (and TV ads), and others as timeless as the emotions they express. While no longer just John and his acoustic guitar, listeners to "Side Effects" may still hear echoes of early influences such as Jimmie Rodgers, Phil Ochs and Tom Lehrer. Although people who enjoy modern folk music should find "Side Effects" very much to their liking, the range is broad enough to discourage too narrow a categorization. Perhaps, it is simply music for today. Music for you.



to write a review

Alaska Fred

John Sprung's 'Side Effects'
A folk singer's popularity is closely linked to his relevance to his times. And John Sprung's music has RELEVANCE. Starting off with the first track on this exciting new CD, "See Alice", (say it quickly three times - SEE ALICE, SEE ALICE, SEE ALICE, and you get an insight into this clever new original song, reminiscent of the style of Tom Leher. It definitely hits the male on the head. The next track, "The Gift", is a catchy ballad on the beauty of America. Switching styles a little is "Understand the Blues", a very poignant and sincere description of "the blues". I also enjoyed John's song, "Joshua". It reminds me very much of the classic folksinger's recounting of a topical story for future generations. The 7th track on this CD is a tribute to past folksingers including Ledbelly, Josh White, Sonney Terry and Brownie Magee, ("The Folk Singer's Sweet Bye-and Bye"). And if you haven't heard it yet, you must listen to "Remember Me", a heartfelt tribute to those who perished in the attack on the Trade Towers on September 11, 2001, from someone who WAS there on that day.
Aesthetically, I think the CD is great. The addition of talented accompanying instumentals and background vocals, enhance this CD, and make it a pleasure to listen to, over and over again. Bravo John, and may there be many more!


An Artist For Our Time
With \"Side Effects,\" John Sprung has once again captured the essence of our times with infectious songs ranging from deeply moving to downright witty! While songs like \"Remember Me\" and \"Joshua\" catch you off-guard with their poignant lyrics and haunting melodies, you can\'t help but laugh right along to catchy, clever tracks like \"See Alice\" and \"Social Insecurity.\" No matter how many times I play these songs, I find myself reaching for the CD over and over. It\'s feel-good music with an intelligent edge, taking a reflective look at life and having a good laugh while doing it! I\'ve been a long-time fan of John Sprung\'s music and now I\'m just waiting for the rest of the world to discover this true talent. With \"Side Effects,\" he proves that this recognition is well-deserved and long overdue. If you haven\'t heard it, go get it, and discover music that really means something!


Side Effects
This is the fourth CD of John Sprung, and each one is better than the one before. The first track, \"See Alice\", is a real hoot, and I believe could make it commercially very easily. Nobody can hear the track \"Remember Me\" or \"The Glory of Their Times\" without being deeply moved. I am anxiously looking forward to hearing music from his next CD!

Shad O\'shea

Side Effects
John\'s poignant story telling lets the listener enjoy his music without being subjected to the pretentiousness that finds it\'s way into so many avenues of today\'s music. The songs are simply stated,well crafted, to the point and serve one main purpose, to ENJOY! My favorite is \"See Alice\". After the funny business, there comes (no pun intended) the other dozen mix of everything to jerk a tear to the realization that life is indeed serious for the most part. These songs wear well and will leave you with the melodies roaming around in your head long after the cd winds down to take a much needed rest. Enjoy! Enjoy! If you find yourself playing this cd for more than four hours in a row, contact your doctor and share the music with him!Good going John!

William Wood

Music To My Ears!
John Sprung's latest CD represents and important step forward for this still relatively unfamiliar folk artist. His lyrics range from the wickedly clever (See Alice) to the deeply poignant (Joshua and Remember Me). The offerings on this album are refreshingly diverse. Having uploaded Side Effects to my IPOD, I listened to the entire album several times on a recent cross country train trip. I am happy to report that it holds up very well on repeat listening. Indeed, like a good wine, more than a few of the songs grow better as you hear them more often.