“Sometimes” is one of Jerry Collins’ most sonically artful tracks to date. His recently more overt Christian impulses has never felt less like a conscious affectation than it does here. A sweet, plaintively rootsy Americana tune of the sort that’s fallen out of the public ear in recent years, due to all the electronics, but which Collins excels at like few of his peers. The song has mature and refined atmospherics built off a shimmering acoustic guitar and a harmonized chorus. As always, it’s also the singer’s voice that’s most critical in interpreting Collins’ lyrics. On “Sometimes”, he chooses to pitch his melody just above his usual vocal range. The effect is that his voice is still rich and authoritative as it’s been on recent efforts; but also reedy and weary-sounding to add more pathos to the track.
The singer knows exactly what he’s doing, having collaborated with Jerry on many a track, as his is the perfect inflection for a song shadowed by deep emotional searching. For a lyricist who tries on different genres and their attendant personas from track to track, “Sometimes” alludes to an interesting portrait of Jerry Collins as a mature songwriter who is still able to surprise.
He often finds a rich new vein for his songwriting in the least expected corners of our music heritages. As you listen to his songs, little details kept yanking you deeper into his world. Eventually you might find yourself unable to stop listening to them.
Unsigned and left to his own devices, Jerry Collins is quietly rebooting the stripped down singer-songwriter sound and setting the stage for a potential creative resurgence of the genre with his releases, of which “Sometimes” is a prime example.
Wrapped in a tale of leaving and loss, this is as wrenching as anything Collins has written. Digging beneath its gentle melodic surface reveals a soul that is caught between feelings of anguish and solace, wrestling with questions of love, loneliness, friendship and desire, on an almost existential level.
It’s a beautiful sounding song, no question. Jerry Collins’ simple and straightforward approach to the music never undercuts the power of his lyrics. Getting the sound right is important, for sure, but Jerry never gets wrapped up in the musical dynamics at the expense of letting the emotional content get lost.
Hence he chooses his collaborators wisely. As his extensive catalog shows, he’s at his best when he strikes a balance between what they produce and what he writes.
MORE ABOUT: Fresh out of the blocks in November 2016, Jerry, a BMI affiliate, set about putting lyrics to country music tunes. Five months later he had switched to Christian/Gospel music, and by July of 2017, he was directly churning out Spiritual rhymes. All through this time Jerry Collins has picked up accolades and critical acclaim as he went about building his catalog for commercial music licensing. A member of the Episcopal Church and a graduate of a small Christian high school, Jerry also has paranormal abilities linked to his tinnitus condition, of which you can find out more on his website.