Discovering an artist as special as Jeremiah Lockwood does not happen that often. From the opening notes of "American Primitive," Lockwood's debut solo release, you are moved. Engrossed. POSSESSED. It is exactly the type of record you'd expect from old, southern blues warhorses such as R.L. Burnside, Othar Turner, or Junior Kimbrough. Only, Jeremiah Lockwood is not from the south and he is not old. He is a 27-year-old NYC Jewish boy, whose first guitar was a Bar Mitzvah gift. And thanks to countless hours listening to Robert Johnson and the aforementioned Burnside, Turner, & Kimbrough, he has emerged as a legitimate bluesman. Only don't mention that in front of him. Lockwood would like to make it clear, “This is NOT a straight blues record.” Boy, is he right!
At the age of 14, Jeremiah Lockwood met Carolina Slim, a 75-year-old sharecropper's son who had been busking on the streets of Manhattan, as well as below in the acoustically propitious NYC subway system. Lockwood had asked if he could sit in with Slim. Carolina obliged. "His little old fingers are just like motors," said Slim in a New York Times article. "He can maneuver on the guitar. Coming out with me, that's when he got real experience in front of the people." Thirteen years later, the duo continues to make music together. Those years together have meant a lot to Lockwood personally, and to the sound of "American Primitive."
Prior to releasing his solo debut, Lockwood had spent the late 90's leading the experimental rock band “The Sway Machinery,” a mongrel if you will, mixing raw blues, rock and roll, and Klezmer quite successfully. It is exactly this type of adventure seeking that makes “American Primitive” not just another blues record. Here's what FOLKWAX magazine had to say: "Jeremiah Lockwood's offering here is a colossal, near-perfect achievement. From Blues to Bluegrass, this CD is rife with so much staggering musical expertise that it almost sits like a little critical mass bomb waiting to explode from the fact that in less than 42 minutes Mr. Lockwood and his compadres (Kieran McGee among them) nail every style all over the Americana map like it was born in their blood."
Lockwood will be playing live to promote “American Primitive,” a record that should appeal to more than just a blues audience. Fans of world music, indie-rock, jam bands, and solid, old-fashioned musicianship should take to Lockwood's completely original approach to music. “As a matter of fact,” Lockwood explains, “I don't want to be pegged as a bluesman. I want to be something to everybody.” From the sound of “American Primitive,” he is certainly going to get what he wants.