Fresh off another romp through the US, UK, Germany, The Netherlands, and Denmark in 2017, Jefferson took fourteen of the new songs he’d been playing every night and molded them into his new release, PLAY HURT.
Jefferson has always done his best writing while traveling. "When you're on the road, there's just something that liberates your mind from all the crap you DON'T need to be thinking about," he explains. He penned "Might Be Leaving" in his van in the parking lot of a venue after the soundcheck and went right out and played it in the show before it was really even finished. "Hometown Hotel" came to him while parked in a vacant lot by the old abandoned house he grew up in, where he'd first grabbed one of his father's guitars at the tender age of nine, and much of the song's video ended up being shot there as well. Still another - "Pay For it" - came together just after a particularly raucous show in front of "a thousand drunken college kids."
Ultimately, what was chosen for inclusion on PLAY HURT came together in front of live audiences, a fact of which Thomas is particularly proud. Anything that didn't cut it live didn't make it onto the record. "I call it research-and-development," says Thomas. "If you're gonna write songs, there's nothing better than test-driving them in front of people before you record them. You end up heading into the studio with your strongest stuff, and you save a hell of a lot of time when you get there."
Jefferson Thomas is working on a new release for 2019 and will embark on another round of tour dates in Europe in the spring, in the US over the summer, then back to Europe and the far east in the fall.
You can get PLAY HURT everywhere you find music. but the "expanded edition" - with alternate versions and live tracks - is only available here.