Complete List Of Garland Jeffreys Albums And Discography

Garland Jeffreys Albums

Complete List Of Garland Jeffreys Albums And Discography presents the albums of an American singer, songwriter, and musician, born on June 29, 1943, in Brooklyn, New York. With a career that has spanned over 50 years, Jeffreys is known for his unique blend of rock ‘n’ roll, reggae, blues, and soul music. He is often praised for his introspective lyrics that frequently explore themes of identity, cultural diversity, and social issues. His work has been hailed for both its artistic depth and its social relevance, which has made him a respected figure in the realm of American music.

Jeffreys grew up in a racially diverse community, which had a profound impact on both his worldview and his music. He attended Syracuse University, where he met Lou Reed, a relationship that would become a lifelong friendship and a significant musical influence. After college, Jeffreys moved back to New York City and started playing gigs in Manhattan’s folk clubs before finally launching his solo career.

Career Highlights

Jeffreys’ 1973 self-titled debut album was met with critical acclaim but wasn’t a commercial success. However, it was his 1977 album Ghost Writer that garnered him widespread attention. The album included the hit single “Wild in the Streets” and solidified Jeffreys’ reputation as a keen social observer and a gifted songwriter. The album was a fusion of rock, R&B, reggae, and poetry, an eclectic mix that would come to define Jeffreys’ style.

Over the years, Jeffreys continued to release a string of albums that, while perhaps not massive commercial successes, were critically acclaimed. In 1992, he had another commercial resurgence with the album Don’t Call Me Buckwheat, which focused on issues of race and identity. After a period of relative quiet, he returned with The King of In Between in 2011, Truth Serum in 2013, and 14 Steps to Harlem in 2017. Each album received critical praise and allowed Jeffreys to continue touring extensively.

GARLAND JEFFREYS ALBUMS

Grinder’s Switch featuring Garland Jeffreys

Released 1970

Before achieving broader recognition as a solo artist, Garland Jeffreys fronted the band Grinder’s Switch. Their eponymous album “Grinder’s Switch featuring Garland Jeffreys” was released in 1970 and offers an early glimpse into the talents of a singer-songwriter who would go on to craft a compelling discography that spans several decades. With its roots firmly in blues and rock, this initial offering provided a platform for Jeffreys to hone his skill in blending various genres, something he’d become known for later in his career.

The album was produced by Michael Zager and was largely an in-house project, utilizing the collective skills of the band’s members. Grinder’s Switch was comprised of Garland Jeffreys on vocals, Ernie Corallo on guitar, Stan Schwartz on keyboards, Rob Rothstein on bass, and David Lebolt on drums. The album was recorded at Electric Lady Studios in New York City, although the specific recording dates are less commonly documented.

CD Track Listings:

  1. “Pain in My Heart”
  2. “Dirty Woman”
  3. “Pearl’s Song”
  4. “Rollin’ & Tumblin'”
  5. “Fantasy”
  6. “Nobody Knows”
  7. “Love For Free”
  8. “Morning Glory”
  9. “You Make Me Feel So Free”

Garland Jeffreys

Released 1973

Garland Jeffreys’ self-titled 1973 album marked a significant step in the artist’s career. The album was released through Atlantic Records and garnered critical attention for its unique blend of rock, reggae, and soul influences. Songs like “Wild in the Streets” not only made a splash on radio stations but also became anthems for youth rebellion and social commentary. The album was primarily recorded at Atlantic Studios in New York City over a span of a few months in 1972 and 1973. The production of the album was handled by Michael Cuscuna.

CD Track Listings:

  1. “Ballad of Me”
  2. “Harlem Bound”
  3. “Calypso ’73”
  4. “Needles of Death”
  5. “Lon Chaney”
  6. “No Way”
  7. “Oh My Soul”
  8. “Shoot the Moonlight Out”
  9. “True to Me”
  10. “Wild in the Streets”

American Boy & Girl

Released 1979

Garland Jeffreys’ album “American Boy & Girl” was a turning point for the artist, showing a move towards more introspective songwriting. Released in 1979, the album saw Jeffreys explore a myriad of styles, from rock to reggae and soulful ballads. The album featured Garland Jeffreys on vocals and guitar. Other musicians included Dr. John (piano), David Spinozza (guitar), and Tony Levin (bass). The album was produced by Garland Jeffreys and David Spinozza.

CD Track Listings:

  1. “American Boy & Girl” – 3:42
  2. “New York Skyline” – 4:55
  3. “City Kids” – 3:41
  4. “Bad Dream” – 5:24
  5. “Night of Living Dead” – 3:49
  6. “Disco Queen” – 4:17
  7. “I Got the News” – 3:51
  8. “Bring Back the Love” – 5:35

Ghost Writer

Released 1977

In 1977, Garland Jeffreys released his seminal album Ghost Writer, an eclectic blend of rock, reggae, blues, and soul that earned him critical acclaim. The album was recorded at various locations, including the Record Plant and Electric Lady Studios in New York City, over the course of several months in late 1976 and early 1977. Produced by Garland Jeffreys and Michael Cuscuna, the album was ultimately released by A&M Records.  The album’s musicians were a collection of session pros and notable names. Among them were Garland Jeffreys on vocals and guitar, Dr. John on keyboards, and David Spinozza on guitar. The rhythm section consisted of Brian Stanley on bass and Yogi Horton on drums. Alan Freedman was responsible for the album’s horn arrangements.

CD Track Listings:

  1. “Ghost Writer”
  2. “New York Skyline”
  3. “Cool Down Boy”
  4. “Lift Me Up”
  5. “Why-O”
  6. “Wild in the Streets”
  7. “35 Millimeter Dreams”
  8. “Spanish Town”
  9. “I May Not Be Your Kind”
  10. “Shoot the Moonlight Out”

One-Eyed Jack

Released 1978

“One-Eyed Jack,” Garland Jeffreys’ follow-up to his critically acclaimed “Ghost Writer,” was released in 1978. The album continued Jeffreys’ knack for combining various genres such as rock, soul, and reggae, and it further solidified his reputation as a socially conscious lyricist. The songs often delve into themes of race, identity, and the complexities of life in America, subjects Jeffreys has often tackled in his work. The album was produced by Garland Jeffreys and David Spinozza.

CD Track Listings:

  1. “She Didn’t Lie”
  2. “Keep on Trying”
  3. “Reelin'”
  4. “Haunting Hymn”
  5. “Scream in the Night”
  6. “One-Eyed Jack”
  7. “Ev’ry Time I Look in Your Eyes”
  8. “Caramel”
  9. “Why-O”

Escape Artist

Released 1981

When Garland Jeffreys released Escape Artist in 1981, he was aiming to create a project that would distill his varied musical influences, ranging from rock and roll to reggae and R&B. This goal was reflected not only in the eclectic tracklist but also in the album’s thematic depth, as it covered issues of racial identity, inner-city life, and human relationships. The album was produced by Bob Clearmountain and Garland Jeffreys, and it was released under the Epic Records label. Notably, Escape Artist garnered attention for its visually striking album cover, which was designed by Lynn Goldsmith.

The album featured an array of top musicians. Garland Jeffreys was, of course, on vocals and guitar. Additional musicians included Adrian Belew on guitar, Larry Fast on synthesizers, and Michael Esperto on bass, among others. The album was recorded at various locations, including Power Station in New York City. Jeffreys collaborated closely with producer Bob Clearmountain, who had a significant influence on the album’s polished sound.

Critically, the album was well-received, often praised for its lyrical intelligence and musical diversity. While it didn’t top the charts, it became a favorite among critics and garnered a loyal following. Tracks like “Miami Beach,” “Jump Jump,” and the haunting “R.O.C.K.” demonstrated Jeffreys’ ability to meld genres effortlessly, while maintaining a lyrically poignant edge.

CD Track Listings:

  1. “Modern Lovers” 3:23
  2. “35 Millimeter Dreams” 3:37
  3. “R.O.C.K.” 5:26
  4. “Miami Beach” 4:41
  5. “Escape Artist” 3:51
  6. “Jump Jump” 4:22
  7. “Love Is Not a Cliché” 4:31
  8. “Christine” 3:04
  9. “Night of Living Dead” 3:35

Rock ‘n’ Roll Adult

Released 1982

Rock ‘n’ Roll Adult is a live album that showcases Garland Jeffreys at his performing peak, delivering energetic renditions of some of his best-known songs.

CD Track Listings:

  1. “I’m Alive” 4:23
  2. “Mystery Kids” 3:55
  3. “96 Tears” 3:20
  4. “Christine” 3:05
  5. “R.O.C.K.” 4:42
  6. “Wild in the Streets” 4:00
  7. “Jump Jump” 3:44

Guts For Love

Released 1983

Guts For Love is one of Garland Jeffreys’ more introspective albums. With a mixture of rock, reggae, and soul, the album dives deep into themes of love, disillusionment, and self-discovery. Released under Epic Records and produced by Garland Jeffreys and David Kershenbaum, this album was recorded in multiple studios including Power Station in New York.

CD Track Listings:

  1. “Surrender” 3:32
  2. “Real Man” 4:40
  3. “Lollipop” 3:23
  4. “Lonelyville” 4:10
  5. “Guts for Love” 5:00
  6. “Children of the Street” 3:55
  7. “True Confessions” 4:10

Don’t Call Me Buckwheat

Released 1991

Don’t Call Me Buckwheat stands as one of Garland Jeffreys’ most significant albums, addressing the complexities of race, identity, and social issues. Released under RCA Records and produced by Jeffreys himself, it was recorded in various studios but predominantly at Power Station in New York.

The album features a variety of musical styles, from rock and R&B to reggae, and showcases Jeffreys’ vocal versatility. As with his other works, a cadre of skilled musicians was recruited for the project, each contributing their unique touch to the album’s diverse soundscape.

Critically, Don’t Call Me Buckwheat was lauded for its brave thematic content and its deft mixing of musical genres. Songs like “Hail Hail Rock ‘n’ Roll” and “The Answer” received particular acclaim for their lyrical depth and musical complexity.

CD Track Listings:

  1. “Moonshine in the Cornfield” 1:30
  2. “Don’t Call Me Buckwheat” 4:13
  3. “Hail Hail Rock ‘n’ Roll” 3:50
  4. “I Was Afraid of Malcolm” 4:25
  5. “Bottle of Love” 3:55
  6. “The Answer” 4:10
  7. “Color Line” 4:25
  8. “Lonelyville” 4:10

Matador & More…

Released 1992

“Matador & More…” is essentially a greatest hits compilation that includes the single “Matador,” which was a big hit in several European countries. The album showcases Jeffreys’ varied stylistic range, capturing his best moments in rock, reggae, and even a bit of soul.

CD Track Listings:

  1. “Matador” – 4:40
  2. “35 Millimeter Dreams” – 3:09
  3. “Wild in the Streets” – 2:57
  4. “Ghost Writer” – 4:27
  5. “Cool Down Boy” – 3:14
  6. “96 Tears” – 3:15
  7. “Jump Up” – 3:22
  8. “Lon Chaney” – 3:35
  9. “R.O.C.K.” – 3:50
  10. “Christine” – 6:06

Wildlife Dictionary

Released 1997

CD Track Listings:

  1. “Sexuality” – 4:10
  2. “I’m Not a Know It All” – 3:55
  3. “Oxygen” – 4:13
  4. “God Cried” – 4:27
  5. “All Around the World” – 3:40
  6. “Love Jones” – 4:23
  7. “Wanna Be” – 4:40
  8. “Afrikan Teacher” – 4:35
  9. “Confess” – 3:45
  10. “The Answer” – 4:30

I’m Alive

Released 1993

I’m Alive is a pivotal work in Garland Jeffreys’ catalog, embodying the spirit and energy of his earlier material. The album, a blend of rock, R&B, and other genres, showcases Jeffreys’ versatility as an artist. Produced by Garland Jeffreys himself, the album features musicians like Lou Reed on guitar and Dr. John on keyboards. It was recorded at various studios across New York City during the latter half of 1992.

Track Listings:

  1. “I’m Alive” – 4:08
  2. “Mind Is Twisted” – 3:56
  3. “Streetwise” – 3:12
  4. “The Answer” – 4:17
  5. “I Will Not Be Your Fool” – 5:01
  6. “Why-O” – 4:09
  7. “Loneliness” – 5:23
  8. “I Was Afraid of Malcolm” – 4:45
  9. “Oxygen” – 5:06
  10. “Search and Destroy” – 3:47

The King of In Between

Released 2011

The King of In Between is Garland Jeffreys’ first album in 13 years, following a hiatus after the release of Wildlife Dictionary. The album received critical acclaim for its honest lyricism and diverse musical influences, ranging from rock and roll to blues and soul. The album features notable musicians like Steve Jordan on drums and Larry Campbell on guitars. Produced by Garland Jeffreys, it was primarily recorded in Brooklyn, New York, throughout 2010 and early 2011.

Track Listings:

  1. “I’m Alive” – 3:53
  2. “Coney Island Winter” – 4:13
  3. “Streetwise” – 3:11
  4. “The Contortionist” – 4:05
  5. “All Around the World” – 3:09
  6. “Til John Lee Hooker Calls Me” – 4:57
  7. “Love is Not a Cliché” – 4:35
  8. “Rock and Roll Music” – 4:02
  9. “The Beautiful Truth” – 3:49
  10. “Roller Coaster Town” – 4:22

Truth Serum

Released 2013

Truth Serum was released two years after The King of In Between, and it maintains the characteristic style that Garland Jeffreys is known for—blending rock, blues, and reggae influences. This album continued to solidify Jeffreys’ reputation as a versatile and important musician in the rock and roll landscape. Produced by James Maddock and Garland Jeffreys, the album was recorded at various studios in Manhattan and Brooklyn, New York, during 2012 and 2013.

Track Listings:

  1. “Truth Serum” – 4:11
  2. “Any Rain” – 3:52
  3. “It’s What I Am” – 4:09
  4. “Dragonfly” – 4:07
  5. “Revolution Blues” – 4:32
  6. “She Can Dance” – 4:15
  7. “Is This the Real World” – 4:18
  8. “In God’s Waiting Room” – 3:37
  9. “Venus” – 4:20
  10. “Imaginary Man” – 3:41

14 Steps To Harlem

Released 2017

Garland Jeffreys’ 14 Steps To Harlem continues his exploration of American music, diving into rock, blues, and even a touch of hip-hop. Critics noted that the album carried a more autobiographical tone, examining his past and his long-standing relationship with the city of New York. Produced by Garland Jeffreys and James Maddock, the album was recorded at various locations in New York in 2016 and 2017.

Track Listings:

  1. “When You Call My Name” – 4:07
  2. “Schoolyard Blues” – 3:11
  3. “14 Steps To Harlem” – 4:09
  4. “Venus” – 4:05
  5. “Reggae on Broadway” – 4:03
  6. “Time Goes Away” – 3:56
  7. “Spanish Heart” – 3:58
  8. “I’m a Dreamer” – 3:42
  9. “Waiting for the Man” – 3:37
  10. “Colored Boy Said” – 4:19

Complete List Of Garland Jeffreys Albums And Discography article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2023

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