Jackson C. Frank. He’s the most famous folksinger of the 1960s that no one has ever heard of. As an American singer-songwriter looking for adventure, he left for England in 1965 and while in London influenced scores of young, impressionable Brit folkies with his songs and melodies. He played at numerous folk clubs all over England and stories have been told that he was one of the best performers of his time. Landing a quick record deal, he cut an album of his songs with Paul Simon as producer. The album was an immediate hit over in England and Scotland, but when the album was released in the United States it was a commercial disaster. (© T.J. McGrath)
The album called “Jackson C. Frank” has long been out-of-print but has been reissued in the 90’s. In 2003 there was also another release called “Blues Run The Game” by Sanctuary Records of Frank’s 1965 debut along with thirty-three bonus tracks. What Sanctuary Records has done for this reissue is to gather together in one collection everything Frank ever recorded.
So, I’ve been listening to the album tonight for the first time and it’s just absolutely amazing. Dare I even say I like it more than Nick Drake’s work? Maybe, I need to listen to it more carefully. In any case Frank’s influence shines through Drake’s work, there’s no doubt about that. Fans of Drake or Vincent Gallo need to check this stuff out. And regret what an unfortunate life the man had. Pure bad luck.
Even more than bad luck really. Crippled due to a big fire accident at a young age, only one recorded album in the 60’s, vanished on the streets of New York, admitted to different mental hospitals for over a decade or so, lost an eye when somebody shot him and finally died when he was 56 years. Look into the full story.
A sincere heads up to you Jackson.