Music wasn't much of a choice for Jake. There were never fewer than half a dozen instruments in his home growing up. Jake’s multi-instrumentalist nature is largely a function of which stringed instrument he could persuade his father to “lend” him. It is probably this exposure that allows Jake to twirl a guitar from his chest to his back like a hula hoop so he can catch the next solo on the banjo.
His instrumental diversity is one upped by the complexity of his lyrics. He says a song will percolate in his head for months before he ever puts a pen to paper. It will then evolve for a few months more until he has it just right. He claims not to be political but his lyrics disagree. He sings passionately about what we’re doing to the environment and the way our plugged in life is taking away our independence.
His lyrics took on a new life though when he and his partner, Anna, had their first child. Jake's concerns with the way we live were given a new importance as he thought about the world he would leave his daughter. Through his songs he tries to give his two children a taste of his upbringings in East Tracadie, a rural Nova Scotia fishing/farming village. He also imparts this through his actions, so don’t be surprised to see him biking with a load of seaweed to fertilize his urban garden while dragging his two kids along.
Little Seed, Jake’s most recent studio recording, tells you a lot about the guy; the way he screams “I’m going back to the olden ways” lets you know that he really wishes he could. You’ll also gather that from watching his day to day. A perfect Friday for him is playing folk tunes with the local talent. A perfect Saturday morning is taking his two children to a century old local farm to show them the ways of the past.
Jake is at conflict though; the good and bad are so intertwined. While we can be consumed by the Matrix, as he calls social media, it has huge potential for a musician. While box stores kill local businesses and are tough on landfills, they are nearly unavoidable for a young family on a budget. His music will continue to be an outlet for these tensions and when he is not working the 9-5 you will likely find him cultivating his family, his garden, and his musical ability.
Dad, Ralph DeCoste
The Fourth Well