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Jed biography
JED is the given name for Jed O'Connor who also went by last name Silverstar, who was born in Florida in 1955 and passed away in the Sunshine State in 2005. He wrote and produced one album in 1982 with a limited printing of 300 copies, which commands hundreds of dollars online. The album was intended to promote the Society for Creative Anachronisms, and has not yet seen a legit CD release as of April 2021. The style is gentle psych prog folk with a deliberately ancient feel, marked by solemn and gorgeous harmonies.

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4.05 | 2 ratings
Merlin's Song

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JED Reviews

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 Merlin's Song by JED album cover Studio Album, 1982
4.05 | 2 ratings

Merlin's Song
Jed Prog Folk

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars In the year 1982 when MTV was still young, still played music and generated the world's biggest synthpop and new wave bands while the world of metal music was becoming one of the most popular musical genres of the entire decade, a few unnoticed anachronistic gems slipped through the cracks. Some so obscure that even today are virtually unknown. Jed O'Connor, Jed Silverstar or simply known as JED was one such artist who longed for the psychedelic folk of the 1960s and pined for the musical expressions of Medieval times along with the psych fueled mysticism that permeated the late 60's and early 70s.

JED's only album MERLIN'S SONG is quite the anomaly in many ways and not only on the timeline but also in the fact that JED came from the Latin-jazz rich city of Miami, Florida of all places. This is truly one of the 80s serious obscurities as only 300 vinyl editions were pressed and still has seen no reissues at all. While such artifacts can be dug up all over the world, rarely do they yield the unexpected results of producing some of the most convincing sounds that rival the biggest names in the field. JED's performances are very much in the vein of the most convincing traditional English folk music in the vein of Steeleye Span, The Pentacle, Stone Angel or The Watersons. This intricate display of the passionate woven tapestry of male and female vocals accompanied by gently strummed acoustic guitar driven melodies are truly divine.

This curiosity makes a bit more sense once you learn that the album was recorded as a part of a larger educational project that aimed to teach about life in the Arthurian period and as the title suggests is steeped full of lyrical content that celebrates the legendary Camelot and the tales that revolve around it. While marketed as acid folk, this one is more of a traditional Medieval type of folk with some progressive elements such as the three part closer "The Arthurian Trilogy." The minor chords do evoke a lugubrious and mournful type of experience as it sounds more like a eulogy lamenting the loss of the fabled land more than an actual celebration but nonetheless MERLIN'S SONG is a surprisingly strong album that easily could've been slipped into the 1970 timeline and been a true rival for the era's most famous bands of English folk.

Quite the surprise actually. Everything about this one works quite well. The album truly brings the practice of Medieval folk strumming to life with excellent vocal performances. The lyrics are enchanting and the album truly does evoke the sense of magic around every corner. The only downside is that the tracks are very similar in terms of dynamics and chord progressions. It often feels like songs are just recycled versions of each other with a by-the-book arpeggiated guitar technique. The other aspect i dislike about this album is that the artist just simply goes by JED. Couldn't he have been a little more creative in the moniker department? How about Camelot Crusade or even called the artist MERLIN'S SONGS but that's a minor gripe. Overall this is an excellent slice of Medieval English folk coming from an unexpected place at a time when this music had fallen out of fashion.

Thanks to kenethlevine for the artist addition.

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