New York, NY. (Top40 Charts/ Shore Fire Media) - Diana Jones channels the "flavour of a bygone era" (The Guardian UK) on 'Better Times,' (May 19th, Proper American). Combining high lonesome singing, traditional strains of mountain and old-time music, and a highly literate lyrical sensibility, Jones has produced a collection of songs which Uncut magazine says "sound like they've spent a couple of generations being marinated on an Appalachian mountain porch." As it turns out, each one is Jones' original work.
The follow up to her critically acclaimed 2006 recording, 'My Remembrance Of You,' Jones' newest songs have already drawn diverse praise and recognition ranging from raves in the UK press (where she's currently on tour) to a connection with Joan Baez, who recently covered "Henry Russell's Last Words" (the third track on Jones' new release) on the Grammy-nominated album 'Day After Tomorrow'.
There may be a reason this music sounds so natural for Jones: it's in her blood, although she didn't always know it. Growing up in the northeast with her adoptive family, Jones felt rootless until she discovered her birth family in Tennessee. Connecting to her birth family completed Jones not just as a person, but as an artist. Since, she has immersed herself in the mountain sound that is her birthright (her grandfather, also a musician, performed with legend Chet Atkins), playing her music anywhere she could: from the busking on streets in Europe, to sold out shows in New York, Nashville, London, and beyond.
Her compelling life story is apparent on the new album, informing impressionistic lyrics that evoke vivid, timeless characters and scenes, updating the rich folk tradition. The title track, "Better Times Will Come,' glows with the simple comfort of a family fireplace. As Jones' high lonesome voice - joined by guest vocals from Nanci Griffith - soars over the spare strumming acoustic guitar and fiddle, she speaks of the happiness and better times that only come from home.
In contrast, "If I Had A Gun" spins a story worthy of the classic murder-ballads tradition, burying unnamed antagonist "in the cold cold ground" before going home to "sleep sound." On other tracks Jones embodies a woman going off to fight in war ("Solider Girl"), a miner dying alone in dark mine, scratching out his final message to his family ("Henry Russell's Last Words"), and many other forlorn souls.
Jones has an ambitious schedule of dates planned for this Spring and Summer, including stops in all of the country's major venues. A finalized itinerary will be available in the coming weeks.