Top of the World
When Jere Mendelsohn sings about 'Driving down the middle of this highway, caught between the mountains and the sea,' we know it's a poetic metaphor, but it's also a road map of a life lived in real time, with all of the joys and sorrows, questions and contradictions left intact. Jere's music is filled with the kind of imagery and passion that people in any corner of America will instantly understand. It's music that feels like home. Simply put, Jere Mendelsohn gets it. He's lived it, he's been there. He understands that 'the nights roll in and go too fast, and the days rain down like broken glass.' The good times can be spare; the crap can last a decade. Yeah, Jere's like us, but with that one big difference that those of us who can't get 'Chopsticks' on a keyboard or strum 'Oh Susannah' on guitar can never quite get past: he expresses what we're feeling and what we want to say in the songs that he writes and sings, and in the notes he squeezes from a beat-up Telecaster. After all, you don't get to replace legendary Hellecaster Will Ray in one of his own bands unless you can bring it from note one. Jere Mendelsohn's music is crafted from a lifetime of hard work and simple triumphs. He's 'packed his bags with new world dreams' and too often found himself a family man playing 'for one more dollar, one more empty room.' An acknowledged, award-winning guitar slinger, Jere couldn't keep himself from the road, and along the way, climbed inside all of his influences: soul music, one-hit singles, Bakersfield twang, rockabilly, flat-out hillbilly music - anything played from the heart and worth cranking on the car radio. When he straps on a Tele and steps to the mic, he's going somewhere special, and taking us with him. Jere's music has kept him true and focused, and in these new songs, he has stepped out - way out- from the workingman role of sideman, session man, and hired gun. Carved from the contradictions and convictions of his own life, Jere has found lyrical and musical expression that reaches back through all of his inspirations to create music that is at once familiar and fresh. Think Dwight meets Tom Petty in Danny Gatton's backyard. In the purest definitions of the term, Jere's music is roots music. It asks for a piece of our hearts and in return, it gives us solace, and on a real good night, a reason to shake our asses. And best of all, it takes us down that solitary highway to our 'final destination.' Why not? It's just another name for the place we all want to be. Home.