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Wide Awake In My Head
© 2004 James Velvet

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James Velvet
Wide Awake In My Head
remakes, retakes,
& other odd fish

Total Time: 50:53
Cost: $9.98 +s/h*

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Accepting Credit Cards and PayPal

Read Our Review

STYLE: Americana Roots / Rock-n-Roll

HOME TOWN: New Haven, CT.
                         New England, USA

Visit James Velvet's WEB SITE

Get James Velvet  GIG INFO

James Velvet

Frank Critelli puts James Velvet
"On The Sofa"
for an interview,
read it HERE.

1. Wide Awake (#1)
2. Sittin' On A Fence
3. She Comes And Goes (#1)
4. Lazy Me
5. Gouty Arthritis
6. Dark Wind (#2)
7. Corrina Gets Away (#1)
8. Saint Cecelia (Beautiful Name) (#2)
9. Ordinary Time ...a young widow's lament...
10. I Miss You (#2)
11. The Kindness Of Friends (#2)
12. She Comes And Goes (#3)
13. Turned Around
14. Slow Down Time
15. What I Said (#1)
16. In My Head

Check out James Velvet's
NEW CD - Just Plain Jane and
                   Other Modest Proposals
& also his CD - Bones 'n Clones

Check out James Velvet's band -
The Mocking Birds

Issue #72                                 Mar. '05

How do you ramble?

People have many ways to ramble. Vocally, physically, mentally they roam, they wander, they stroll and they spread aimlessly – some in no particular direction and others with a somewhat cloaked idea, while vaguely feigning indifference. While some will argue that the last example is not compliant to rambling, I would disagree on a personal level, see, I ramble, and I ramble in many of the ways I just cited (and possibly a few more at that), but one of my most structured (if not oxymoronic) rambling is the type I do through music. I tend to, and love to, ramble through music, I allow it to take me where it may, I willingly follow as it roams and wanders in, out, and over life in the unlimited ways it can. But, you take a gamble when you ramble through music, for it has a way of creating a distinct destination which then defeats the purpose, for if your goal/intent is a true ramble then you must leave yourself open to wherever the music will take you and if you’ve cued up an album of a precise manifestation then what’s the point? (note: while not intending to dis the benefits of structured listening experiences – because we love those as well – I am offering up this synopsis as a purely unique argument for the innate need to ramble).

So, how do you ramble?

James Velvet rambles through music, yet while I ramble through music from the sole position of listening, James Velvet rambles through music by creating it, and he surely creates it from his vast experiences of listening to it, of living it, and of becoming part of it. James Velvet has rambled on the turntable of life and not only allowed the grooves to take him where they may, but also left a mark on those grooves so that when another needle tracks on through it can ramble along with him.

Wide Awake In My Head is a musical ramble that touches everywhere from Holly to Costello. While slightly structured as a chronological retrospective, it strolls through time with one of the most proficient singer/songwriters that New Haven, CT has been able to call it’s own for over the last decade and a half. Subtitled “remakes, retakes, & other odd fish,” Wide Awake In My Head allows us to wander through the basement and attic of the years 1989-2003: years which yielded cassette EPs, cassette albums, cassingles, and CDs - the majority with Velvet’s long standing institution The Mocking Birds, but also including solo outings with guests that include many of the New Haven scene royalty. And while rambling through this basement and attic we find not just the diamonds in the rough, but the polished ones as well.

Sometimes after recording a song I feel that it needs a second or even a third chance to find itself.” So states Velvet in the liner notes. In essence, James Velvet believes that just like us human beings, sometimes a song needs to ramble in order to fully appreciate and understand its life – to find itself. And as a human being, James Velvet needed to ramble through all these remakes, retakes, & other odd fish to not only find where the music has led him, but also to find that the music has led him to find himself as well. Because here on display is the James Velvet that loves to ramble through music, the inner creative Velvet that most may have not actually noticed before. While 10+ years of recording and releasing CDs combined with uncountable live gigs (including an unheard of 11 year run of monthly appearances at Café 9) made James one of the best known stalwarts of the New Haven music scene, this collection exposes more of the man in 50 minutes than all those years combined. And it is all those years of musical ramblings that make this a document of profound proportion.

Firmly anchored in Americana roots rock, the music Velvet creates and recreates on these 16 (alternate/rare) tracks rambles through influences as varied as any found throughout the years. It’s a complete testament to the wandering soul of a musician who writes lyrics that center around the appreciation of love, the beauty of nature, and what some would term the left leaning politics of the anti-war, peace-loving, sub-culture of the 60s. Wide Awake In My Head roams and wanders in, out, and over life in the unlimited ways that James Velvet allows it to, and as such created an enlightening ramble through the historic influence of American music.

So, how do you ramble?

I put on Wide Awake In My Head.
Ramble on James, ramble on.

 Wide Awake In My Head by James Velvet.
Is available now for: $9.98 +s/h*

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*Shipping & Handling charges:
USA - $3.00 for the first 2 CDs ordered,
                     Add $1.50 per each CD after.
Canada - $5.00 for the first CD ordered,
                          Add $2.00 per each CD after.
Everywhere else -$7.00 for the first CD ordered,
                                        Add $3.00 per each CD after.

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