JJ Grey’s musical career has taken him to strange and disparate places — including, in the same month, a fraternity party in Alabama and the Democratic Governors Association Ball during the recent presidential inauguration festivities in Washington, D.C.
“It was cool we got to do it and pretty wild to be up there,” says the Florida native, 41, who’s released four albums of swampy, soulful rock as the sole constant in Mofro, including 2008’s “Orange Blossoms.” “We were right around the corner from the big (We Are One...) concert at the Lincoln Memorial. You could hear Bruce Springsteen, U2, (Barack) Obama’s speech ...
“That weekend was kind of supercharged. There were people all over the place, and everyone was fired-up. It was an experience.”
Grey, meanwhile, feels that “Orange Blossoms” is the kind of experience he’s always wanted listeners to have from his music. He credits that to preparation, as well as to longtime co-producer Dan Prothero.
“This record sounds as close to what I’ve wanted all the records to sound like, as close as we could get,” Grey says. “The tones (Prothero) was able to get and everything really feels like what I’ve always wanted us to sell.
“And when we go out on the road, people know the material. They’re singing along from the first note, even on the brand new stuff, so that’s been amazing. It feels like we really hit the mark this time out.”
JJ Grey & Mofro and Backyard Tire Fire perform Friday (Feb. 6) at the Magic Bag, 22920 Woodward Ave., Ferndale. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15. Call (248) 544-3030 or visit www.themagicbag.com.
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