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You're Never Really Alone

by Jonah Parzen-Johnson

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  • I want to be part of a community of people whose first allegiance is to empathy and mutual understanding. This book is the result of an exercise meant to help actualize that aspiration. Over the course of two months of touring in support of my album, "Remember When Things Were Better Tomorrow", I took time to imagine my own reasons for many strangers’ most basic decision. The result is three reasons to live in thirty four cities in the United States and Canada. Empathy and mutual understanding can start with a small affirmation:

    I could live where you live.

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  • Full Digital Discography Full Digital Discography

    Get all 8 Jonah Parzen-Johnson releases available on Bandcamp and save 15%.

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality downloads of You're Never Really Alone, Friendship Music for Turkey, Imagine Giving Up, Helsinki 8​.​12​.​18, I Try To Remember Where I Come From, Remember When Things Were Better Tomorrow, Look Like You're Not Looking, and Michiana. , and , .

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about

Brooklyn-based artist Jonah Parzen-Johnson returns with the new album You're Never Really Alone, out on We Jazz Records, March 8. If you look at the label on the LP containing eight intimate compositions for baritone sax & flute, you will find the words, “we made this together”. At first thought, this simple phrase may seem out of place on a solo record, but just like the compositions on this album, it was carefully crafted to cut to the core of what this music is all about.

In Jonah’s words: “It’s pretty hard to end up at a solo saxophone concert by accident. Odds are pretty good, if you are there, it is because you light up when you experience something new, something experimental. That shared desire connects us, and suddenly, for a night, we are a community. For me, being connected to those spontaneous communities is the best part of being an experimental artist. Everything I make is in service to the cultivation of that community, our community. Without it my music doesn’t exist and because of that I can joyfully say to each person, at every concert, that we made this together.”

You’re Never Really Alone arrives in stark contrast to Parzen-Johnson’s 2020 We Jazz Records solo debut, Imagine Giving Up. Where Imagine Giving Up was celebrated for Parzen-Johnson’s ability to assemble deeply evocative electro-acoustic sound worlds, “filling the landscape in one element at a time until a picture emerges that could almost be a full band,” (Wire Magazine, March 2020) You’re Never Really Alone shows us that Jonah can look you in the eye and say “my voice alone is enough”.

Across eight tracks, Parzen-Johnson, a Chicago native, explores the technical limits of his baritone saxophone and flute without ever making the listener feel like he has something to prove. You will find circular breathing, multiphonics, and explosive levels of sound, but more importantly, you will enjoy every moment of musical storytelling and compositional skill. This album is made for repeat listening.

The opening track, “When I Feel Like Myself” is a meditative invocation of self realization. Parzen-Johnson summons three and four note harmonies from his saxophone with deep control, as he gently explores how tension can become its own release. An unadorned melodic thread gently weaves each musical expression to the last, guiding us deeper into an album that simultaneously celebrates the power of one, and the yearning for exploration that unites us all.

credits

released March 8, 2024

Composed and produced by Jonah Parzen-Johnson
Mixed by Jonah Parzen-Johnson
Mastered by Alex DeTurk at The Bunker in Brooklyn NY
Design by Matti Nives

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Jonah Parzen-Johnson Brooklyn, New York

Jonah Parzen-Johnson makes music for baritone saxophone & flute that challenges listeners with experimental textures while embracing them with warm melodies. A Chicago native & longtime Brooklyn resident, Jonah has performed solo across 4 continents. His solo performances are a deeply intimate experience that celebrate the temporary moments of community that we can all embrace together. ... more

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