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Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Jenn Franklin - Girl Invisible (Vol. 1)

Jenn Franklin - Girl Invisible (Vol. 1)
2010, Groove House Records

Nashville singer/songwriter Jenn Franklin will get you with her voice and keep you with her songwriting. A warm, soulful sound full of deep texture will greet you in the opening moments of her sophomore EP, Girl Invisible (Vol. 1), and draw you in like an old friend. Once in, the songwriting will hook you. Franklin dwells in the darker places of human emotion, drawing inspiration from some of our weakest moments and lifting them up to the light. It's a cathartic process for Franklin, who is both counselor and counselee in the songwriting process, learning as much about herself as about the people she writes about. The buzz on Jenn Franklin has been building since the release of her debut EP, Errors & Omissions, which saw two songs placed on MTV's "Real World Hollywood" and helped Franklin score a slot as a showcased artist at SXSW as well as headline slots with the NY Songwriters Showcase and various Festivals around the country. Co-produced by Jim Reilly (The New Dylans), Girl Invisible (Vol. 1) features musicians Ken Coomer (Wilco), Charlie Chadwick (Shelby Lynne, Steve Earle), and Bryn Davies (Patty Griffin) backing up Franklin on her most impressive work to date.

Opening with "Seven Again", Franklin explores the darker impacts that parents can have on their children with careless words. Franklin admonishes the subject of this song to get him/herself worked out for the sake of the child, who is losing their childhood to the fears and insecurities of the parent. "Most Beautiful Man" warns about beauty and the dark secrets it might cover; a peppy-yet-dark tune that seems to mix the dark/light elements it warns of. "Hold Up The World" is presented here as a piano ballad; but it’s a song of consolation and love, offering respite to one in need. The simple piano arrangement marries to strings throughout for a simple, beautiful sonic mix. Franklin closes with the soulful gospel/blues arrangement of "Courageous", an ode to the one who gives her the strength to carry on. It's a love song that's both worldly and full of emotion that allows Franklin to show more of her soulful side.

Jenn Franklin is on an upward trajectory with a great deal of potential. Girl Invisible (Vol. 1) is a bit dark thematically, but the music is good for your soul, full of earthy emotion and themes that are accessible to everyone. Franklin throws herself into each song, and that commitment comes out in the performances on Girl Invisible (Vol. 1). Don't be surprised if Jenn Franklin wins you over.

Rating: 3.5 Stars (Out of 5)

Learn more about Jenn Franklin at or Girl Invisible (Vol. 1) drops on June 22, 2010. You can order the CD now though Franklin's webstore. Expect availability from Amazon and iTunes as well. Photo courtesy of Jenn Franklin & Shutter Creek Photography.

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