Owen Franklin: The Not-So-Great Gatsby
19 year old singer-songwriter Owen Franklin's second release, ‘The Not-So-Great Gatsby’ finds him fiddling with the classic story written by F. Scott Fitzgerald.
Franklin sings and plays piano on nearly all tracks and has a youthful way of combining images and bursts of vivid emotion. He’s no Dylan or Jason Mraz, but there is an unpolished, tongue-in cheek attitude on the title song. He has obviously felt rejection and wants to set the record straight. His sharp, verbose and spiteful reaction is all evidenced in the final product which is catchy, but diamond-in-the rough.
Franklin cites Billy Joel, Dylan and Springsteen as his idols, and he hopes to also convey the feelings of hope, not just loss, through his lyricism. I don’t think he’s quite defined himself, yet, which may mean that, down the road, we’ll see more diverse material. Still, his original way of seeing the world is refreshing.
The faintly-sung ‘The Tempest’ (Part 1) suggests 1960s American folkies and it’s delightful to hear him sing, “Lately I’ve been thinking of how we’re all getting older.”
‘She Walks in Beauty’ has some adventurous bars of space-aged music which uniquely fade and introduce more traditional rock riffs.