New songs from tragic singer unearthed
Paul Connolly

18:16 12th November 2015

More about:

A remarkable 18 years after the singer’s accidental death, a new Jeff Buckley album is slated for release.

You and I is loaded with covers from Bob Dylan, Sly and The Family Stone, The Smiths, Led Zeppelin and others and will be released in March 2016 through Columbia/Legacy Recordings

The songs were recorded at Shelter Island Sound studio in New York in February 1993, and were uncovered thanks to research being undertaken for the 20th-anniversary reissue of Grace, his 1994 debut album.

A number of Buckley albums have been released since his death in the Mississippi in 1997 – notably 1998's Sketches for My Sweetheart the Drunk, on which Buckley was working when he died – but You and I will include the first previously unheard original Buckley song, Dream of You and I, as well as eight covers and the first ever recording of Grace.

The release of You and I has been overseen by Buckley's mother, Mary Guibert.

"As we began to explore how we might celebrate the 20th anniversary of Jeff Buckley's Grace, the vault," she said in a statement. "As it still occasionally and unexpectedly will -- presented us with an unbelievable gift: this "lost" cache of studio recordings from the period," explains Adam Block, president of Legacy Recordings in a statement. "We quickly realized how remarkable they were.

"They offer an incredible, rare glimpse of an artist, alone, in the sacred space that is the studio. There's an intimacy and an honesty to the performances that's literally breathtaking. You & I is an important addition to Jeff's recorded legacy and will be a thrill for both his devoted long-time fans and newcomers alike."

The tracklisting is as follows:

1. Just Like A Woman (Bob Dylan cover)
2. Everyday People (Sly & The Family Stone cover)
3. Don't Let The Sun Catch You Cryin' (First recorded by Louis Jordan)
4. Grace (original)
5. Calling You (Jevetta Steele cover)
6. Dream Of You And I (original)
7. The Boy With The Thorn In His Side (The Smiths cover)
8. Poor Boy Long Way From Home (traditional blues song, Bukka White cover)
9. Night Flight (Led Zeppelin cover)
10. I Know It's Over (The Smiths cover)

  • Chris Martin, Coldplay: In an interview with the BBC, Martin said 'Shiver', which featured on the band's debut album 'Parachutes', was " blatant Jeff Buckley attempt". "Not quite as good, that's what I think. We were 21 and he was very much a hero, and as with those things it tends to filter through," Martin added.

  • Anna Calvi: "When I first heard Jeff Buckley I was 17," Calvi once told fans. "I remember my friend suggested I listened to him, saying his voice was 'even better than Thom Yorke's'. I remember lying on my bed with headphones on, listening to Grace all night, over and over and over. It seemed to combine the passion and intensity of classical music with a roughness and edge which I found incredibly addictive. I remember writing some of his slightly dubious lyrics on my school bag. I don%u2019t listen to Jeff any more, but I feel his music has settled inside me."

  • Matt Bellamy, Muse: With the soaring falsetto and maestro tendencies, it should come as no surprise that Bellamy is an avid fan of Buckley - telling Kerrang in 2005: "Back then, it wasn't really cool to sing falsetto because Nirvana and all that stuff was in. We saw Jeff Buckley do a concert, though, and he wasn't scared to be a high-voiced male. I think that helped me open up and not be afraid to use a more expressive and emotional vocal style."

  • Kiesza: The rising 'Hideaway' star is on record as listing Buckley's version of 'Hallelujah' as one of her favourite songs, saying that it was "the first song that inspired me to play live."

  • Bat For Lashes: Natasha Khan shares Buckley's knack of soul-searing vocals. She told LA Magazine: "My own music taste is rather eclectic. Vocally, Jeff Buckley is a huge influence and inspiration."

  • Thom Yorke, Radiohead: Everyone knows this story, but it's a good one so we'll tell you again. The band were finding it difficult finish recording 'Fake Plastic Trees' while making The Bends, so took a break to see a Jeff Buckley gig at Highbury. When they returned to the studio mesmerized by Buckley's set, Yorke sang the song twice before breaking down into tears.

  • PJ Harvey: Double Mercury-winner Polly Jean knew Buckley personally, and was a huge influence on her. So much so that she wrote the track 'Memphis' in his memory: "In Memphis...die suddenly, at a wonderful age, we're ready to go."

  • Bono, U2: The bespectacled stadium filler often pays tribute to the Grace star, once poetically saying "Jeff Buckley was a pure drop in an ocean of noise."

  • Ben Folds: "My singing used to be awful," Folds once said on US radio. "I don't have Jeff Buckley's voice…It can be kind of scary. You're on the radio next to -- well, on the shelf next to Jeff Buckley. We're in the B's. People can flip through and pick up his record instead and hear a lot better singer. He has that knack…"

  • Rufus Wainwright: They've both covered 'Hallelujah', and the pair once knew each other - inspiring Wainwright to pen the track 'Memphis Skyline' in his memory. Speaking to Uncut, Wainwright said: ""I met him once and we hung out and he died not long after. I hated him when he first came out. I thought he was riffy and kind of boring and I didn't really get it. But there was also a deeper rivalry with Buckley that existed in my mind. I don’t know if we could out-sing each other, but it would have been interesting to have had a singing competition with him."

  • Adele: Speaking of the music that influenced her huge third album 25, Adele said: "I try to listen to music that might uplift me but I don't really connect with it. So mainly, Jeff Buckley. And that's been my entire life I've done that. I remember falling out with my best friend when I was like seven and listening to Jeff Buckley, because my mom was a huge fan. Grace has always been around me."

  • Lana Del Rey: It stands to reason that the Ultraviolence pop-noir sensation would be drawn to the romance and melodrama of Buckley - not to mention his flawless vocal. "I moved to New York when I was 19 and I've had a love affair with the place ever since," she once said. "That’s when I found Bob Dylan, Frank Sinatra, Jeff Buckley, Leonard Cohen - my masters - and I've never really listened to anything else since." She would later add: "Jeff Buckley is another big inspiration... I mean, we talk about these people like we know them. They're a part of our relationship. We always say, 'All of our friends are dead and they never knew us'."

Issue Four of the Gigwise Print magazine is on pre-order now! Order here.

More about:


Photo: Press