Hailed as “a real deal country singer” and songwriter who pens “old-school country [songs] about love, loss, vices, God, friendships and navigating it all the best that you can” (Omaha World-Herald), Cody Jinks will issue what Rolling Stone touts as “his much-anticipated album,” Lifers, on July 27, 2018. It’s the first release under his recently-inked deal with Rounder Records by a genuine independent music phenomenon who boasts a quarter-million records sold, millions of streams and strings of sold-out shows packed with avid fans.
He precedes the 11-track album with its first single “Must Be the Whiskey,” a spirited number in the grand drinking song tradition that released on June 15. It’s a boozy yet wise rumination on how “these thoughts in my head are a whirlwind of a world of regrets/All the things I should’ve done or things I should’ve said/All the pain that comes with making a mess of yourself.”
Lifers opens with a punchy shot of spiritual thirst, “Holy Water,” that’s laced with ringing steel guitar and female backing vocals. The set wraps up with two honest self-examining confessionals on “Stranger” and “Head Case.” In between he tips his hat to the dedication and struggles of hard-working folks on “Lifers,” travels through a haunting western landscape on “Western Wind,” a place and love he left behind on “Colorado,” and examines his musical journey and drive to pursue it on the zesty two-stepper “Can’t Quit Enough.” “Somewhere Between I Love You and I’m Leavin'” skillfully balances on the edge between heartbreak and desire, while “Big Last Name” and “7th Floor” tell the tales of two markedly different romantic quests.
The music throughout is a muscular brand of deeply-rooted American music with a modern edge interspersed with moments of emotive delicacy and widescreen majesty. It’s rich with Jinks’ gift for “blending an innate knack for hooks with the DGAF attitude suited for a rebel,” as Rolling Stone describes his creative approach.
Over the course of his previous seven albums, Jinks has generated national grassroots excitement that propelled his last release, I’m Not The Devil, to debut at #4 on the Billboard country chart as well as hit #3 on the independent music chart and Top 30 on the pop chart, and be named one of Rolling Stone Country’s best albums of the year for 2016. He’s become a populist 21st Century music star thanks to the potency of what The Tennessean calls his “rumbling baritone and steel-edged songs” and a relentless tour schedule of high-octane live performances.
The album release will be followed by Jinks’ inaugural Loud and Heavy Fest, a multi-stage day of music, arts and food on August 18 at the scenic Panther Island Pavilion along the banks of the Trinity River in Fort Worth, TX, the city where he was raised. The line-up capped by Jinks and his hard-driving band includes his friends and favorites Whiskey Myers, Corrosion of Conformity, Whitey Morgan, Colter Wall, Nikki Lane, The Sword, Paul Cauthen, Sunny Sweeney and Ward Davis.
Alongside his new record deal with Rounder, Jinks has also struck an agreement with Thirty Tigers Records to reissue his back catalog. Now Lifers celebrates the resilience of the human spirit and pays tribute on its title track to the often-overlooked “lifers, the struggling strivers, working long after the day is done… the last of the great generation.” Jinks is proud of how as a musical “lifer” he has forged his way to stardom on his own terms. “What is success if you can’t wake up everyday being who you really are?” he concludes. “It makes complete sense that I’m at this place in my life. Country music found me when I was young and chased me down as I grew older.”