Making a Scene presents Gerry Casey’s Interview with Jack Browning
Jack Browning is a 25-year-old artist and musician hailing from London (UK), but takes inspiration from all over Europe and the United States. A sucker for folk, blues, rock and country music, Jack divides his time between the recording studio, the art studio, and touring the UK and Europe. Raising beers and cheers equally, Jack weaves a line drawing from traditional titans and new-age outlaws alike, from Neil Young, Tom Petty, Tom Waits and Bruce Springsteen through to Townes Van Zandt, John Prine, Willie Watson, Charley Crockett and Colter Wall.
A true student of the great songwriters of our time, he has forged his own tradition of lyrics which speak to the collective experience of his audience, never condescending but instead laying himself entirely open in raw compositions harking back to his heroes.
His debut solo record recorded in the UK between October 2022 and January 2023 and mastered by Charlie Francis, is a collection of original songs written in early-adulthood and ties together themes of touring, working as a labourer, grappling with mental health and the inescapable instinct to roam and wander. It is a personal introspective, and weaved in amongst a soundscape of guitars, pedal steel, banjo and more are stories of love, loss, folklore and most everything in between.
Jack worked closely with producer Dan Lucas and musicians like Rick Kent, Patrick Lyons, Wiza Kaluba, Brant Tilds, Wes Brooks and Crosby Coford to bring these ideas to life and orchestrate a record which has a narrative thread right the way through it.
In intimate songs like Dog Tired, the vocals and pedal steel intertwine to create an intimate portrait of my life as a labourer, trying in my spare time to push my art and music but being just too tired to do so. I suppose it’s in the tradition of my favourite songwriters.
Kerosene is a quiet introspective composition disguised in a bigger-sounding, full-band production. Once again, the steel comes in for a rapturous solo, and the song manipulates dynamic peaks and troughs to leave my lyrics wide-open.
The Family Guns is a two-part song which draws on his inspirations in cinema, and the incredible composers like Ennio Morricone who created these otherworldly soundscapes. The latter half of the song is a murder-ballad, complete with mariachi trumpet and once more, that lyrical steel which Pat Lyons puts down so well.