Jim James: The Musical Magic Of Tidying Up | WBEZ
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Conversations from the World Café

Jim James: The Musical Magic Of Tidying Up

I spoke with Jim James back in November, before Japanese organization guru Marie Kondo's "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up" hit Netflix. I have no idea whether Jim had read Kondo's previously released book of the same title. But Jim James' latest album and Kondo's method share a common result - clearing your clutter can reveal truths you didn't notice about yourself before. The album Uniform Clarity is a collection of songs free of sonic clutter – simply vocals, guitar and lots of open space. It's the same collection of songs that were on the solo record Jim released in the summer of 2018, Uniform Distortion, which lives up to it's name. It's a record full of what Jim called "intentional chaos/dirt". In our conversation, Jim reflects on some of the truths he found in his lyrics while making Uniform Clarity, including his thoughts on drinking and struggles to stay in the moment. Jim also told me about reconnecting with his first ever guitar, which his mom found in the process of her own tidying up when Jim's parents were moving. And we hear live performances Jim recorded for World Cafe in New York.

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