SONG OF THE DAY Jackson C. Frank – My name is carnival


Anyone familiar with the music of the folk singer-songwriter, Jackson C. Frank will know about his tragic life story and his all-too-short music career.

Jackson C. Frank released his one and only eponymous album in 1965.  Released on EMI Columbia, the record was produced by Paul Simon whilst they were both living in England.  Because Frank suffered from severe shyness, during the recording he requested to be shielded by screens so Paul Simon, Art Garfunkel, and Al Stewart could not see him, claiming ‘I can’t play. You’re looking at me.’ 

After the release of the record, Frank was plagued by a series of personal issues and was diagnosed with schizophrenia and ongoing depression and this subsequently prevented him from maintaining his career.  Jackson C.  Frank spent his later life homeless and destitute and died in 1999 of pneumonia.  Though he only released one record, he has been cited as an influence by many singer-songwriters, including Paul Simon, Sandy Denny, Bert Jansch and Nick Drake and has songs covered by artists such as Simon and Garfunkel, Counting Crows, Mark Lanegan, Bert Jansch, Eddi Reader, Fairport Convention, Nick Drake and Sandy Denny (whom he dated for a while. During their relationship, Jackson convinced Sandy to give up her nursing profession to concentrate on music full-time).

Rolling Stone journalist David Fricke called Frank “one of the best forgotten songwriters of the 1960’s.”

Jackson Carey Frank is a relatively new discovery for me and I wonder how I’ve never stumbled upon him before… My Name Is Carnival is one of my favourite tracks…check it out above.

 

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