J.S. Ondara (from the album Tales of America available on Verve/Forecast)
The thumping bass line is the beat that soundtracks an “American Dream”, the cut that J.S. Ondara picks as the first journal entry on Tales of America, the recent release from the musician. Originally from Nairobi, Kenya, J.S. Ondara moved to Minneapolis, Minnesota to begin his U.S. musical career in the same spot as the songwriting hero he found at a young age, Bob Dylan. Built by acoustic instrumentation, Tales of America mirrors early Dylan releases with the stripped-down guitar/voice delivery of “Master O’Connor” while front porch Folk strums match the reverie channeled on “Television Girl” and rhythm causes a spark as “Torch Song” watches its melody catch fire.
Recorded in Los Angeles at Boulevard Recording and East West Studios, Tales of Americabrings in U.S. native sons to help with the album when J.S. Ondara is joined by Andrew Bird, Taylorand Griffin Goldsmith (Dawes) andJoey Ryan (The Milk Carton Kids). An easy sway guides the shuffle of “Lebanon” as J.S.Ondara asks “Good Question” on whispered guitar chords, puts a heartbeat groove under the farewell in “Saying Goodbye”, and relies solely on his voice to tell the story of “Turkish Bandana” as Tales of Americaknocks on the doors of US borders as the album exits on a refugee’s prayer with “God Bless America”.
Listen and buy the music of J.S. Ondara from AMAZON