We all know Ireland is a well containing diverse talents. There are some we are familiar with, others are less known although they deserve wider audience. This is the case of Jamie McDonald, a singer/songwriter from Carlow who has lived in Spain, Bulgaria and now he's back on the home soil. Jamie sings with such a contagious passion and energy that would even awake the dead, as they say.
His soulful voice and honesty that comes deep within will make you wanna see him live as soon as possible. Always surrounded by amazing musicians, his style is a mixture between country, folk, soul and gospel. This man could easily sing any style. Each track on new album Maladies of Country and Soul has a unique feel, there are tracks that make you weep (Say Something), others make you dance (This Longing, My Bones). Somebody might say these mixed emotions are typical for the Irish. But there's no way you would get sad or depressed while listening to these songs. The opening track This Boy Is Back In Town surprises the listener in a not-much-heard way because it ends suddenly, as if cut in the middle by mistake. But it's intentional. Say Something sounds like a romantic ballad but has much deeper meaning (what do you think it's about?). The violin in Oh Lonesome Me reminds you once again where you are. The closing track Night train to Zagreb contains refreshing oriental elements.
All the sounds on this album are rich, perfectly combined and here you have the answer why songwriting is considered a craft. After taking this trip through different genres you can't deny that Jamie is a master of his craft. And he continues to shine.