Jeff Shelton & Well Wishers – Blue Sky Sun
The Well Wishers are a fixture nearly every year on various end of year best-of lists. In fact, their previous effort, Shelf Life, graced our best of list for 2020, finishing at #12. Why? Because Jeff Shelton has mastered the art of guitar jangle while wrapping hooky melodies around thoughtful lyrical content. On Blue Sky Sun, he gets back to a tried and true formula. One that never gets old.
Big Guitars & Bigger Hooks
His big guitars and catchy choruses often remind me a bit of REM and this most recent effort is no different.The galloping pace of “Serenade” leads into Jeff’s hallmark guitar shimmer. “Hours and Days” is about as catchy a three minutes and 29 seconds as you’ll hear this year. The chorus is killer. The guitar fills and solo, exquisite. The opening riff of “Figure It Out Myself” is a hook unto itself. And the song only gets better from there.
Shelton wraps things up with a slower, piano ballad. It’s an interesting juxtaposition for sure and a very appropriate way to end the proceedings.
While he does pretty much everything from soup to nuts including producing, Shelton has the help of some friends on this one. That’s Pete Bohan’s guitar solo on “Figure it Out Myself”, Chris Brown’s piano & keys on “Blue Water” and Marty Schneider’s guitar solo on “Hours and Days”.