Jerry Joseph & The Jackmormons – Happy Book

January 01, 1970

Sex School)


Taking a cue from the Beatles’ so-called White Album, tireless troubadour Jerry
Joseph and his combo the Jackmormons offer up a double disc set
that emphasizes diversity and a marked shift in style. In truth, a two CD set
seems something of a stretch, given that Happy
boasts only 15 tracks in total, a number that’s less than one might
expect given that expanse. Nevertheless, if Joseph was itching to exercise his
ambitions he’s found an ideal avenue; disc one reflects a fondness for funk and
a brooding, squinty-eyed perspective underscored by brass, rhythm and


Even so, the second set fares better; after sufficient
warm-up, Joseph and company adopt a
Stones-like swagger, his Jagger-esque vocals providing a prominent snarl for
“Mile High, Mile Deep,” “Without a Rope” and “Campo Miguel.” It’s a surprising
shift, even for these well-rounded rockers, but the electro pulse that
underpins the bluesy “Spit” and the slow, bedraggled shuffle of “Ship,” affirms
their basic savvy. Several pedigreed guests add their talents – members of the
Decemberists, Blitzen Trapper and Richmond Fontaine among them – but the intensive
effort displayed in this Happy Book of Jackmormons is mostly a credit to Joseph and the band alone.


High, Mile Deep,” “Without a Rope,” “Ship” LEE ZIMMERMAN

Leave a Reply