In the early ’60s, young Doug Jerebine began making a name for himself across his home country of New Zealand as an up-and-coming guitar player, and by the mid ’60s, he was tuned into the psychedelic movements happening the United States and beyond. Drawing inspiration from the likes of Cream, Hendrix and Steve Winwood, Jerebine cut a record under his stage name, Jesse Harper, which was all set to be released by Atlantic Records. But that day never came. The album’s been dormant for the last 42 years, until now.
“Ashes and Matches” represents exactly what we’re dealing with here: a warm analog sound of a guy excelling at the psychedelic blues that was popular during that era.
“The song was about a girl I knew called Sandy,” Jerebine tells Hive. “We’re hopeless, smoking our lives away. I had an enormous ugly green ashtray, and it was full of cigarette butts, ashes, and matches. I gave up smoking shortly after that.”
Jerebine says that the song blends a Western and Eastern style of playing, something that he’s still doing to the day. “Few combine them successfully, and I think this is due to usage of the keyboard which gives false intonation and a false calmness. But in the end, East and West are one.”
Doug Jerebine’s Is Jesse Harper is arrives January 31 on Drag City.Doug Jerebine - Ashes and Matches