There are many luckless bands, artists and albums that have the label ‘should have been bigger’ wrapped around their product. The Action, Candy Opera, Forever Amber, Bradford, the endless list could on until the cows come home, slowly. One of the strikingly horrifying entrants on this list is the lead singer of The Stairs, popular solo artist (especially with Noel Gallagher) and all round top bloke Edgar ‘Summertyme’ Jones. His prolific diverse output is up there with his contemporaries including The Real People, Paul McCartney and Paul Weller.
The outstanding rich quality and diversity of his material is as charming as dipping a toe into a warm soap sud filled bath, a unique blend of mixing the sound of the old with the new rivals any retro loving artist out there and probably beats most to the finishing post. His voice also is one of a kind, sounding at times like Captain Beefheart mixed with a rasping Blues wailer but with the sweet charm of prime John Lennon Beatles era. Never one to shy away from unleashing a prime number for this adoring fan base, his 20 year plus of input is now being released in the guise of a stunning 3 CD box set with a fascinating insert containing many rare and previously unseen pictures memorabilia and precise liner notes and a thank you note from Edgar himself.
Many guises of Jones’s solo work is covered here including his work with The Joneses, Big Kids, The Isrites and The Free Peace Thing. Whilst not being a categoric anthology this certainly does treat the listener to many of the best of his material. Stand out contributions include More Than You’ve Ever taken from the widely acclaimed Soothing Music For Stray Cats, coming in at just over 2 minutes the track is unforgettably groovy, The Big Kids single of I’m Bored is a funkier version of Iggys tune of the same name whilst the B side Too Much Baby scratches and delves into a chunky 60’s sounding jam. Statistical Knightmare brings the blues to the proceedings, giving the Bluesbreakers a run for their money with this monster tune, whilst the rest of the set is just as stunning as the rest of the material, the whole set is littered with glittering gems.
Of all the releases Cherry Red have recently released this is the one not to shrug a shoulder at, it deserves a 2nd glance and purchase. Jones has a sweet genius appeal, his music speaks a good jive, authentic, passionate, devoid of gimmicks, Jones is the real deal but famished from the spotlight all too often, do let this into your life, once you do you’ll be forever praising the name of Edgar Jones.
The Way It Is, 25 years of solo adventures can be purchased via the following link