Pen to Paper
Jay Clark's debut album, PEN TO PAPER, includes 12 original songs, all written or co-written by Clark. The album is an all-acoustic recording containing hints of bluegrass, classic country, blues, and Americana music and was recorded with long-time friends from Robinella and the CC Stringband. Jay's singing and playing style have been described as: '...a sweet mixture of folk and bluegrass - 'folk-grass' you might call it. His handsome tenor resonates mournfully above delicate-sounding, intricate chords, and when backed by the CC Stringband (and accompanied by Robinella's vocals, as he is on several tracks), his songs hum with power.' (Steve Wildsmith, The Daily Times, Maryville, TN) PEN TO PAPER represents a diverse collection of Clark's thoughts put to music. His handcrafted lyrics range from heartfelt ballads about being homesick for the mountains of Tennessee ('Going Home' and 'Hills of Home') and the trials and tribulations of coal miners ('Coal Mining Man', a song written about Jay's Grandfather) to drinking songs with religious overtones ('Pen to Paper') and vice-versa ('Sunday Afternoon'). With regard to the latter: 'As the son of a Cumberland Presbyterian preacher..., Clark's devout religious upbringing is apparent in his songwriting. However, he manages to balance faith with a soft spot for drinking.' (Clint Casey, Metro Pulse, Knoxville, TN) Jay has opened for artists such as Billy Joe Shaver, the John Cowan Band, and Blue Moon Rising and regularly appears with and opens for Robinella and the CC Stringband. Jay 'daylights' as a wildlife researcher at the University of Tennessee and resides in Knoxville. Other quotes about Jay: 'Clark has an aw-shucks air of sincerity about him: down-to-earth and heavily grounded with the idea that the respect of an audience is earned. Clark, however, is poised to ease into a region heavily inundated with singer-songwriters and command respect.' Clint Casey, Metro Pulse, Knoxville, TN 'Jay Clark will never be confused with an NFL linebacker. He's almost dwarfed behind his Martin guitar. But when he steps to the mike and uncorks his songs - some whimsical, some serious - about lost love, hard times, two-fisted drinking, coal mining and other raw elements of rural life, they drive an extra nail in the shingles. His rich voice and heartfelt ballads remind me of James Taylor, one generation removed.' Sam Venable, The Knoxville News Sentinel.