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Nashville’s Finest Rising Stars

Jax Hollow And Patrick Sharrow Are Nashville’s Finest Rising Stars

By Debbie Brautman

Every so often an album comes along that blows you away. That would be Only The Wild Ones by rockin’/ blues/Americana singer-songwriter, Jax Hollow, from Nashville. Don’t try and put her in a box. Just put her album on your turntable. For now, it is available both on cd and streaming but will be out on vinyl soon. It has it all…tremendous songwriting, powerful and beautiful melodies, catchy arrangements, impassioned vocals, and memorable songs. It is wicked awesome, as they say in western Massachusetts, where she was originally from. Jax knows how to write songs that inhabit your brain. Every day you will wake up singing a different one of her songs, as they are all potential hits. On Wolf in Sheepskin,” she sings the lyrics: “I have some friends on the coast…but I’m better sleeping alone!” It is the way she belts it out that is so believable and relatable. Add infectious guitar riffs that combine with her superb vocal phrasing and it wins for best song of 2023. Just watch her video on YouTube and you will immediately understand. There are so many other memorable songs on this gem of an album, with all songs written by Jax. On the fiery “Ethereal Emerald,” there is this amazing swirling guitar and it is a blazing rocker with Zeppelin influences. Did I mention that she is a guitar whizz kid? She has been playing since twelve years old, when she decided she wanted to become a female Jimmy Page, after listening to Led Zeppelin, the Stones, and other classic rock. She also decided back then that she wanted to play Earl’s Court in London. Her lead guitar work is extraordinary, making this record special. Jimmy Page should be proud. Another gem is “Wallflower Girl In Bloom” which features Jax on acoustic guitar, Serena Z on Violin, and Tim Galloway on banjo, giving it an indie/Americana feel. Not since Bloodkin’s 2021 underappreciated album, Black Market Tango, has an original album been quite this exciting. “Renegade Season” showcases more stellar guitar solos and it is a driving rock song that builds to yet another fabulous chorus. Her new album is doing very well. Jax is opening for Melissa Etheridge at The Ryman Theater in Nashville, on July 30th, which is such an exciting step. After having completed her European tour, she is on a summer tour that includes Bowery Electric and The Marquee in New York. She is a rising star and deserves every bit of it.

“Whores and Heathens” has the rawness of Bonnie Raitt and the swagger of Alanis Morisette. Once again, it is incredibly infectious. “Stepping Stone” shows her bluesy side and accentuates her expressive voice and a killer chorus of “You made me your stepping stone, I’ve been chasing the shadow of a man I used to know, so thanks for wasting my time.” “Ventriloquist” has a sexy New Orleans Jazzy vibe. “You Didn’t Hear The Redwoods” provides her cool guitar riffs and a guest appearance on bass by the talented Patrick Sharrow. The title track, “Only The Wild Ones,” is a ballad with more gorgeous violin and the lyrics, “Only The Wild Ones Know What I Mean.” Her inscription on the inside of her album is: “To the adventurous, restless hearts – pursue your freedom without limitation. Be bold, brave, and stubborn for the audacity of Vagabond Dreamers.” She is living her dream, and loving it. As Tom Petty sang long ago, “The Wild One, Forever.”

Both Jax Hollow and Americana singer-songwriter Patrick Sharrow caught my attention while they were playing together as the house rock cover band in the Rolling Stone Rock Room on Holland America’s cruise ship, the Rotterdam. There is a wealth of top-quality musicians from all over the world, that are playing in bands on various cruise ships for a limited contract term and then returning home to work on their original music. Both these great artists are original talents who performed nightly covers on my cruise and their talents were obvious, but their hearts are in making original music. They tackled Led Zeppelin, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Tom Petty, The Eagles, and Bryan Adams with ease. As great as they were on classic rock covers, it was their originals that impressed me the most. Both have great voices and exceptional guitar skills. They are natural performers and extra special singer-songwriters.

Magic fingers Patrick Sharrow is a cool Americana/roots rock/ blues artist who plays a mean guitar and has a voice that is up there with Springsteen and Bob Seger. He is also an incredible singer-songwriter with his new album, The Heartland, out on July 14th. He is from upstate New York and relocated to Nashville after releasing his first EP, Closing Arguments. There are musical influences from Top Petty, Jason Isbell, and Ryan Adams. As for Patrick’s new album, it is also hypnotically memorable with great songs. On “Turncoat Blues,” he sings convincingly, “Once again, it’s 2 am and you got nowhere else to go, once again, you’re out of friends, and I’m the fool who can’t say no,” and wails, “I’m on my knees and after all this time you can’t see, what you do to me.” Like Jax Hollow, his lyrics hit home to many. He is impressive on acoustic and electric guitar. The title track on his new album, The Heartland, might have been influenced by Bruce Springsteen and John Mellencamp but Patrick makes it his own, as a voice for the working man with the message: “No relief for the working man, no such thing as a back-up plan.” It’s a highly infectious rocker that Springsteen is sorry he didn’t write. “Lightning In The Jetstream” echoes Bryan Adams, and evokes mental images laced with humor: “I made a stupid joke, I saw you try not to laugh… you were only seventeen.” Jax Hollow and Patrick Sharrow are both rising stars perfecting that Nashville sound in the most modern way. They are true artists who are passionate, driven, talented, and great beyond words. Buy their music, watch their videos, and see them live. “Only The Wild Ones,” and “The Heartland” are not to be missed!

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