Jenn Cleary

Back to the Wheel
Self-released

If this, her sophomore album, was meant to spark a tour playing snack time at preschools nationwide, then Jenn Cleary hit the nail on the head. She doesn't sing so much as baby-talk, occasionally to a melody and more often not. And what she's goofily intoning is the lyrical equivalent of putting "Laughing" and "Friends" in your Facebook interests. She categorizes her music as blues, but B.B. King isn't about to write a song called "Last Day of Vacation Blues." On what is, by default, the edgiest song on the album, "Little Mr. Street Survivor," the protagonist has been abandoned by his father, his mother is incarcerated, and Cleary offers this useful tip: "Be strong, break on through/Stand tall, stay safe and to your own self be true." Maybe that will work in Boulder, but the real world is just a bit more complicated.

 
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