Jan Van Gold kicks up her heels with her eclectic single New Walking Shoes — premiering exclusively on Tinnitist.
A preview of the colourful B.C. singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist’s upcoming solo album Blues Come A Rockin’, the infectious New Walking Shoes joyfully slaps the sweet spot between horn-topped blues, get-down funk and swampy NOLA jazz. And while it started off as nothing more than an ode to fresh footwear, like all great songs, it delivers a topical message to boot.
“A friend showed up one day with a new pair of shoes at the exact time that I needed them,” explains Van Gold. “They even fit! That was enough inspiration to pick up the acoustic guitar. Over the years this song has become more than just a song about shoes. It’s developed into a mantra of sorts, focus on the positive, look for the good in people, have a happy life. It has become quite apparent in our lives these days we need to be able to roll with what’s happening, to try on new ways of being, put on new shoes so to speak. Open our eyes, see a new reality.”
For Van Gold, that new reality also includes her ambitious sixth album Blues Come A Rockin’, an aural polychromatic exaltation to the dynasty of blues. Like a tapestry of sound, the disc weaves together elements of blues-rock, Texas blues, and electric blues in all their multifarious glory. Returning after a long hiatus, Van Gold comes out swinging with toe-tapping tempos that jam to the heartbeat of her rich musical soundscape — a heady wine with hints of swing-like horns, a smattering of scatting, notes of upbeat funk, a heavy dose of New Orleans jazz and plenty more.
For Blues Come A Rockin’, Van Gold cobbles together her most successful live sessions, pullig those tunes off her setlist to distill them for the studio. Owing to the hiatus and subsequent runway for the album, many of the songs have undergone a transformation, emotionally evolving as new experiences influenced her artistic process. Being a lover of the creative freedom afforded by multitrack recording, Van Gold indulges herself by playing all of the instruments on the album like a one-person powerhouse of musicianship.
Yet this joyous approach belies the heartfelt outpouring within Dylanesque lyrics and poignant poetry aimed at the core of critical issues from today’s world — from fracking to pipelines to politics. Van Gold seeks to enlighten, entertain, and educate — while getting you up and dancing! Start to finish, Blues Come A Rockin’ is a melting pot flavoured wth Van Gold’s inspirations. It’s Sue Foley teamed up with Powder Blues. It’s James Brown getting it on with Betty Davis and Mavis Staples. It’s Louis Armstrong jamming with Carlos-freakin’-Santana.