• Review

Jeremy Pinnell: Ties of Blood and Affection

There is a lot of good music of all kinds in this area. There are so many good musicians and songwriters around, along with venues that regularly host such talents, that I will often discover a new favorite by accident. That’s how I first heard Jeremy Pinnell. Maybe three years ago, I saw Jeremy with Arlo McKinley and Mark Utley in a songwriter round at the Crow’s Nest in Price Hill. Each songwriter took turns singing their songs alone and acoustic, and every song Jeremy sang hit me in the gut. I saw him perform one more time as a solo singer/songwriter, but I didn’t really appreciate how authentically classic his songs were until I heard him with a band. There are few people out there who can translate the raw emotion of one singer and a guitar into a 5-piece band without losing emotional power in the mix, and Jeremy Pinnell is definitely one who can. Good players know good songs, so if your songs are good then good players will want to join you. Jeremy Pinnell is able to gather the best of Cincinnati’s best for the music he plays, and the musicianship on his latest album, “Ties of Blood and Affection” proves it with top-notch performances that lengthen the roots of each song deeper into the soil of Jeremy’s influences.

The most powerful instrument is Jeremy’s voice, with an authenticity that cannot be faked. His lyrics are personally revealing, sharing with his listeners the stories of working hard, keeping things simple, and showing gratitude for the blessings that come along. For generations, country music has kept simple themes of work, family, and faith, and “Ties of Blood and Affection” has equal parts of all. My favorite tracks are the ones that have to do with consistency and commitment to living an honest life. Modern country often includes these themes, but rarely does it have the same sense of first-person honest. Nobody should ever, ever refer to Jeremy Pinnell as “bro country” (unless your brother is Waylon Jennings).

Jeremy Pinnell is currently touring in Europe and then continuing shows in the United States. It may be a while before you get to see him live again, so get your hands on a copy of “Ties of Blood and Affection” to hold you over.