The Lexington Stretch has an almost nostalgic vibe to it, maybe because it’s a reminder of what we really look for in music – the human touch…
The Lexington Stretch
Label: The Jorgensens
10 tracks / 40 minutes
In the genealogy of pop, rock, soul and jazz there have been a number of husband and wife musical collaborations. Ike and Tina begat Delaney and Bonnie, and Delaney and Bonnie begat, etc. The line of descendants straddles several genres and several decades. The Jorgensens are (is?) one of the latest of these duo-led groups. Breaking the first name tradition (maybe Kurt and Brianna had too much of a yuppie vibe), the Jorgensens step up to the plate with The Lexington Stretch, an album that establishes their particular calling-card with forty minutes of jazzy soul seasoned with a generous pinch of Americana and a spoonful of blues.
The first thing we hear on the project is a three-part acapella vocal line starting “If the Sea Was Whiskey.” Eventually joined by a string bass and a very New Orleans-flavored horn section, this opening track lets us know right away that The Jorgensens aren’t as concerned about modern radio conventions as they are about creating good music in the niche of their choice. And just what is that niche? Glad you asked.
The Lexington Stretch is a musical love-letter to blues, jazz, Americana, and soul. Among a collection of original compositions there are two covers: the aforementioned “If the Sea Was Whiskey” and “St. James Infirmary” – the former, dubbed ‘Prelude’ and the latter, christened as ‘Interlude.’ Kind-of gives you an idea where Kurt and Brianna are coming from. Where Ike and Tina Turner were about soul meeting Rhythm & Blues, and Delaney and Bonnie were about rock ‘n roll partnering with gospel, The Jorgensens are about combining Louisiana jazz with a simmering, bluesy soul. The strongest musical melting pot on the album might be “Storyville,” which starts out reminding me of “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door,” and features all of the aforementioned elements in a very rural Americana setting – yes, even with the slightest hint of gospel – paired with a warm, punctuated horn part that sounds like it could have been arranged by Van Morrison and Edgar Winter (think: “Good Morning Music” from the White Trash album).
The Lexington Stretch has an almost nostalgic vibe to it, maybe because it’s a reminder of what we really look for in music – the human touch. Every song sounds the way you might expect it to sound if you were sitting in a club, watching a live performance. Kurt’s vocals are pleasant, non-threatening (no vocal histrionics here), and earthy. Brianna’s delivery is from the soul, more concerned about gritty than pretty – very often in the Bonnie Bramlett role, and that ain’t bad. I would guess that the amazing Ms. Bramlett was a strong influence on Brianna. Together, the harmonies are inviting, fluid, and very listenable.
The Lexington Stretch is, above all, an earthy album – one that gets into your ears and under your skin. I think The Jorgensens hit their target…
- Bert Saraco
- 4 Tocks
You can see concert photography by Bert Saraco at: