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Jacob Miller Offers Warmth and Introspection On Sophomore Album Around My Head

jacobmiller

Carefully curated, intentionally executed, and thoughtfully written, there’s something irrevocably inviting about Jacob Miller’s sophomore album Around My Head.

Exploring themes of personal growth, introspection and acceptance, the Oregon-based singer-songwriter offers a place of refuge for listeners.

It is “an album of growth, both thematically and personally for myself as a songwriter and artist,” he explains. Paying careful attention to lyrical content, Miller is able to tell his story while encouraging listeners to find “their own story in these songs as they listen and re-listen to the album,” he says

An artist with a unique background, Miller has had the opportunity to absorb from across all genres and expand his craft through every setting. Studying regional music of the Appalachians and having the opportunity to play everything from country-blues to jazz, Miller’s music is a product of his prowess. While the album largely features a skillfully stripped back guitar and tender vocals, Miller explains that the album also “embraces sonic elements of older recordings that I have long admired.” By paying homage to musical legends across time and genre and infusing his own contemporary take, Around My Head feels both familiar and fresh.

Intentional about incorporating an extra layer of meaning, songs like “By My Side,” offer foley to draw the listener in an all-encompassing way, while “It’s You I Like” features the voice of his 5-year-old nephew. For “By My Side,” Miller explains that while at Feng Way Studios he miked “glass bottles and keys rattling on the floor boards” in order to “convey this feeling of swirling restlessness the character in the song is feeling as they lie awake.”

On the other hand, “It’s You I Like,” the album’s closing track, ends sweetly with the voice of a young boy, Arlo, Miller’s nephew. “I thought adding him to this lovely song of inclusion and affirmation would not only be real tender, but a special time capsule for him and I to have in the future.”

Miller’s thoughtful musicality is demonstrated throughout the entire project. Every seemingly minute detail works in symbiosis to create a vivid and evocative feel which is palpable in each song.

“Though some of the tunes are specific lyrically, I am hopeful the overarching themes and feelings these songs provoke will be relatable to the listener,” he says.

In this way, Around My Head offers listeners candid glimpses of Miller’s mind and in turn, invites us to explore our own tragic and beatific thoughts too.

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