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Album Review: J.S. Ondara - Tales of America



J.S. Ondara travelled from his home of Nairobi, Kenya to Minneapolis, Minnesota for Bob Dylan after establishing that he was quite the fan of the folk legend.

It was only after losing a bet with his friends over who wrote the original 'Knockin' On Heaven's Door', with him adamant it was Guns N' Roses, that he became fascinated by Dylan.

In little over five years, Ondara has gone from a budding musician to dizzying heights, supporting the likes of former Fleetwood Mac star Lindsey Buckingham and Anderson East, signing with a major label and teaming up with a host of musicians on his acoustic debut album, 'Tales of America'.

The record - which features collaborations with Andrew Bird, Taylor and Griffin Goldsmith of Dawes and Joey Ryan of The Milk Carton Kids - is the 26-year-old troubadour's take on America as an outsider and journeys from romanticised to resoundingly honest.

He also bares his soul with hints of heartbreak on 'Saying Goodbye' and an infatuation with 'Television Girl'.

Ondara is dazzling and a man beyond his years.

He brings great joy with his effortless and pure, angelic voice.


Rating: 9/10