Jeff Pianki | Remember It Now (new album)
When I think about recent album releases that I find myself regularly taking in, Remember It Now, the new album by Los Angeles-based indie folk musician Jeff Pianki, pops to the top of my list. The 11 songs on this 30-minute acoustic folk masterpiece elegantly and organically flow from one to the next as if they were destined to be experienced in the order in which they are presented.
I can't really select a single favorite song from Remember It Now - every one is outstanding and unique in some special way. Jeff's songwriting style is genuine and honest, with tender, heartfelt vocals that tell poignant, real life stories. The 11 tenants of Remember It Now are neighbors at peace and harmony with one another, each with its own joys, insecurities, and memories of fleeting and indelible life experiences.
Remember It Now contains some truly stunning acoustic ballads ("Julie In July", "Iris", "Remember It Now"), poignant piano-driven poetry ("Black Hole", "Move You"), subtle electronic treatments ("Elon") and ultra-smooth, shimmering, indie folk gems ("Weight of the World", "Annie in the Wild", "Song About", "Hard Love", "The Weight of Us"). Give this album a listen if you know what's good for your ears, mind and psyche. They'll all thank you for listening.
I first heard Jeff's music when the album's first single, "Weight of the World," was released in late 2019. True to the "sound thread" theme that defines much of my music discovery, it was producer, mixer and engineer Steven James Aguilar who led my ears to Jeff's music. Ahead of the "Weight of the World" single release, Steven recounted in an Instagram post how he'd discovered Jeff's music several years ago through a series of YouTube videos, sharing his music with anyone who'd listen. A few years later, Jeff moved to LA and published a post looking for someone to play music with him. Steven jumped at the chance, recounting, "We played together and it was instant magic. I had given up writing, but Jeff inspired me to write again. I wanted to make a record with him, but of course, he had given up writing, too."
Jeff's music inspired Steven to restart songwriting and record Let It All In, Steven's debut album under the name Heatmaps. Steven comments, "He [Jeff] inspired me to make a record of my own. In truth, the main reason I finished it was to share it with him. And eventually, he started writing again, too. And then the floodgates opened."
And if you're looking to extend your Jeff Pianki listening experience beyond the 30 minutes of Remember It Now, be sure to check out two additional songs ("Bad Timing" and "Delilah") that Jeff just released on Bandcamp. About "Bad Timing," Jeff comments, "I wrote this a couple days for a songwriting group where we each write/record a new song weekly. Given the state of things, it’s probably an appropriate day for a quarantine love song. Hope everybody is staying safe out there."
JEFF PIANKI "SONG ABOUT" (tread softly live performance)