Pokey LaFarge releases, ‘Fine To Me‘, an exhilarating second track from his new album, ‘In The Blossom of Their Shade‘.
Ironically, for a performer who draws so much on older musical styles, LaFarge is one of the most astute and creative artists working across the Americana genre. In interviews he reveals how thoughtful he is about what he does, about who he is, about what troubles him, and about the things he cares about. It’s often in stark contrast to the breezy, exuberant showman he presents in his videos. (For example, check out his last interview on Chris Shiflett’s excellent podcast ‘Walking the Floor‘ for some insight into LaFarge’s inner workings.)
The new album, ‘In The Blossom Of Their Shade‘, marks something of a departure for LaFarge. As he says, “The first record I’ve made, perhaps ever, where I’m searching for the light as opposed to darkness. Musically a combination of Bo Diddley and Roy Orbison in the Caribbean. Sonically like early JJ Cale and Van Morrison recorded live direct to 1/4 tape…You can consider this song funky praise or a praise song with a lowdown groove. To me, it’s kinda 60’s Bobby Darin meets Junior Wells.”
Despite this new-found positive outlook, ‘Fine to Me‘, is still – happily – classic, trademark LaFarge. It’s a fantastic, slinky, rock’n’rollin’ strut of a song that’s the perfect pick-me-up for post-pandemic blues. “Paradise at my fingertips // And I ain’t gonna let it go // You put a spring up in my step // And down the street I stroll // I got a new way of walkin’, walkin’ // A new way of talkin’ too, talkin’ too.” The playing throughout the track is, as you would expect from LaFarge, top class.
The very stylish video is again directed by Brandon Bernath (who now has a bit of a track record for outstanding videos with LaFarge), with the camera work by Chris VanValey. It’s another beautifully designed and executed song and dance extravaganza, part studio dance party and part street dance. The choreography is on point and the overall styling is faultless.
LaFarge keeps setting the bar higher and higher with the production values and performances in his videos but you don’t get a sense that he’s in any danger of running out of ideas. Just great fun, and memorable in every department.