Album Reviews

Jaymay

To Tell The Truth

Artist:     Jaymay

Album:     To Tell The Truth

Label:     Jaymay Music

Release Date:     08/26/2016

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Raised on Long Island and city-based, Jamie Seerman began her musical career as Jaymay after graduating from college in 2003 when she started performing at Monday night open mics. Since then, Jaymay has released 10 EPs and three full-length records. In the decade she’s been crafting indie vocals with pop beats, her music has been featured on hit shows like How I Met Your Mother, she has provided songs and score to the 2010 film Happythankyoumoreplease, and has performed on several late night television shows. Though her last LP was released in 2007, Jaymay has been kind enough to provide fans with a stream of fairly frequent EPs, just enough to satisfy but not enough to be content without more. Now, almost a decade after her last full-length release, Jaymay is offering her latest record, fan-funded To Tell The Truth, a thoughtful way of encompassing all that she has been, is, and will be.

Coming in at 13 tracks and 43 minutes, the record is short and sweet. It opens with the candy-coated “Baby Maybe One Day”, a sugary upbeat track with Jaymay’s pure voice juxtaposing dismal lyrics. The record’s most imaginative and lyrically impressive comes early on in the line-up with the title track, which chimes with eerie percussion behind a wandering voice that sings poignant lines like “With you, I have no goals/Only days that dare unfold/Like a flower that keeps blossoming through no will of its own”. The longest track on the record, “Enlighten Me”, plays like a story written by Jaymay for Jaymay. Twinkling with multi-genre influence, her voice speaks and sails for seven minutes, a carousel of theatrical storytelling. “Cassie’s Song” is an aching but upbeat elegy to her sister who tragically passed, a small part of the greater whole of To Tell The Truth, which can, fairly, be considered a tribute record to loved ones past. Next, “Singin’ Of The Birds” gently pulses with Jaymay’s lushest vocals yet when she sings sweetly “I’ll take the train in the morning”, one phrase enough to break your heart. “There Are Red Roses” is one of the most gorgeous tracks on the record, unusual in the best way as Jaymay’s voice seems to shrink and contract, compressed into a meandering, dreamy breeze, sharing the space with sparse guitar strums and shimmers of rhythm. Then, the album ends with a farewell as the uncomplicated, matter-of-fact “We Say Goodbye” wraps up To Tell The Truth with a pretty little bow.

On her latest record, Jaymay proves that she is more than her struggles, but they are a part of her. Brave and shining, To Tell The Truth spotlights just how much Jaymay’s voice can do, how her songwriting tells stories important to us all, and how thoughtful production can lead an album to new heights.

–Savannah Davanzo

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