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JD McPherson at El Club, 3 Things to Know

By Gary Graff
ggraff@digitalfirstmedia.com, @GraffonMusic on Twi

Posted: Friday, November 30, 2018

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JD McPherson has gotten us a Christmas present this year.

And it's "Socks."

The Oklahoma-born Americana favorite's fourth album is a holiday set, but rather than take on the standards McPherson composed 11 brand new songs, recording them with his band in his current home base of Nashville. It's often fun, occasionally poignant, but as much as any of his other efforts it showcases McPherson as witty and human, still a fresh sound in a well-traveled genre...

McPherson, 41, says by phone that making "Socks" was "some of the most fun I've had" working on an album, primarily because the songs are all originals. "Just from the writing part, it was challenging enough to keep it interesting to me. My sense of humor is there a little bit. The band are masters at playing this kind of stuff, so just to hear them go and do what they do so well made it a really fun and rewarding album to work on."

McPherson acknowledges that it's "tough to try to write to some of these (holiday) themes that are just done over and over -- fun in the snow, all of that." So on "Socks" he set out to find some different things to write about. "The idea was to find a way to get at the idea of what the time of year is without doing the obvious. That was the challenge and most fun part for me. I found that when I started excluding certain themes it actually became clear how it was gonna go. They're kind of tongue-in-cheek; Focusing somewhat on the disappointing aspect of the season was kind of fun to do."

And while "Socks" may be irreverent, McPherson fully understands the appetite for music during the holiday season. "Deep down everybody loves it. Even though they say, 'Oh, I'm so sick of Christmas music' or 'They're playing it too soon,' or too long, there's a reason why they play Bing Crosby and Darlene Love every year. It's because it's great music and people obviously have a desire to hear it for a couple of months every year."

JD McPherson performs at 9 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1 at El Club, 4114 Vernor Highway, Detroit. Doors at 9 p.m. $20. elclubdetroit.com.

Web Site: www.elclubdetroit.com

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