Multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter Jack Francis invites you to ‘buckle up for the ride’ on the deceptively buoyant single ‘Failure’ out now, taken from his new album Early Retirement due for release 22nd March.

While touching on a similar theme of frustration like previous track ‘Lifeline’, Southampton-based musician Jack Francis flips the narrative with his new release ‘Failure’ and sings from a place of humbling acceptance. He draws from personal experience and reflects on his success as a musician, or lack thereof, with plenty of ironic humour as he opens with the stellar lines, ‘No money in my future, no gown made of silk… They say the cream rises to the top, I guess I’m the milk.’ Yet for the misery the lyrics suggest, musically, the singer-songwriter’s unique brand of ‘soulful folk’ is on glorious display, providing a perfect counterpart to the lyrics with gospel-inspired harmonies, choppy guitar lines and hazy organ chords.

Jack Francis: ‘They say to write what you know… “Failure” is about what it’s like to be an artist in the current climate. Whilst it is tongue in cheek, it definitely comes from personal experience. In the time I’ve been an active musician, pretty much everything about what it means to do this for a living has changed and “Failure” conveys some of those difficulties and frustrations.’

‘Failure’ is the second of Jack Francis’s 2024 singles following ‘Lifeline’, both of which precede his new record Early Retirement (out 22nd March), exploring a broad range of influences and touching on areas of great British, Irish and American songwriting. The lyrical content demonstrates the writer’s acerbic wit and attention to detail, compounding his experience navigating modern society and fallen dreams. On production duties once again is Archie Sylvester (of folk duo Ferris & Sylvester), making the entirety of the record at their home studio. Providing a wide-open window into his psyche, the musician tackles tough yet common subjects in the current climate with no filter, as he blurs the lines between folk, rock, soul and country.

Jack Francis: ‘Early Retirement is a record about endings and new beginnings. It’s about riding out fallen dreams and trying to navigate modern society as an old soul in a new world. It comes from a very personal place as a writer and conveys my concerns, doubts, sense of humour and stubborn determination to build a life in the field I’ve dedicated myself to.

‘This was a concept album from the very start – it was a conscious choice to make this a singular, coherent piece of work that would stand the test of time in both the aspect of the songwriting and the messages I’m trying to communicate.’

Jack has also gained a reputation as a must-see live performer, having played a slew of Sofar Sounds shows, opened for the likes of Flyte and Courtney Marie Andrews and appeared at several major UK festivals such as Isle of Wight, Victorious and Stone Free Festival at London’s iconic O2 Arena.

His upcoming album Early Retirement will be out 22nd March. Pre-save HERE.

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