"Maybe John Whipple is like Diogenes from ancient Greek mythology, wandering around with a lantern “looking for a human being.” Or maybe he’s just a restless soul doing the only thing he can in life, simply trying to catch a break. Either way, buy his CD /go see him play/get him a show/buy him a beer….you won’t be sorry. You’ll be treated to one of the country’s most unique musical acts and probably have some great conversation to top it off." - Phil Venderyken -Sweet Tea, Music and Pumpkin Pie
"Ghosts" is a jet black, painful, dark, stunning and beautiful whole that JP Whipple as an idiosyncratic and uncut singer and songwriter presents. Headphones seems essential. This album deserves to be completely sealed from the world listening" Altcountryforum.nl
"He is an extraordinarily gifted lyricist, some of the twelve songs having humourous elements, some philosophical, some harrowing, hard hitting, sad and just about any other emotion you can come up with. All of those lyrics are highly descriptive and the clichéd term ‘painting musical pictures’ could well have been invented for the album. This, allied to his selection of the instruments required to get the best out of the songs, plus his raw expressive vocal abilities equals an exceptional, at times thought provoking recording that everyone should have in their collection." - AmericanRoots.uk
"Ghosts is very, very good" - The Mad Mackerel
Things had gone to black. The money ran out. Prospects were grim. I was (and probably still am…) heading to join the ranks of the shopping cart pushers and dumpster divers. Needless to say, I fell into a true black depression. Physically and mentally ill and without any sort of health coverage (Go Team Amerika!) I needed to self medicate.
I couldn’t afford heroin so I set up some microphones and started to record some music. I know. It was such an irresponsible thing to do but I am an addict. There I said it. No more denial. No matter how useless or self destructive my music habit is I just can’t help myself. That’s the first step, right? Acceptance. I believe the next step has to do with atonement. So now I need to apologize to all the people my addiction has harmed and this time I owe you all a big apology. Being so miserable… so devastated… feeling like such a loser and failure… I went on big time bender this time.
I made a whole fucking album…
I have limited means as far as recording goes. The extensive crew of fellow addicts responsible for my last album, Bible Milk, are in far away places such as Portland, Boise, Salt Lake and somewhere in Wales. Each are still fighting their own battles with their addiction (…with limited success I am sorry to say). Music is more addicting than crack and, yet, you almost never hear about all the harm it causes.
Ever desperate to get that fix I decided to embrace my limitations and record all those songs I wrote around the campfire while I was homeless (…or… um… “on tour” and enduring long layoffs between gigs because I have a bad manager (me)). I know what you’re thinking and it is true. Even though my music addiction had reduced me to living out of a pickup truck rather than getting clean I kept right on making music.
f course, once I begun I couldn’t stop. I pushed everything aside. Ignored my bills, friends and family (especially my bills…). Once you’re hooked nothing else matters. Nothing but that next fucking track. My computer is so full of track marks now there is barely room on the hard drive for anything else but I don’t care.
The result is “Ghosts”. If this record has any redeeming value it is that many of the songs are open and honest about the consequences of music addiction. The song “Hard to Love” is all about what happens to people hopelessly hooked on their art (Hint: They become bartenders or waitresses). The song Douche Bag Bar reflects on the sort of scenes you are likely to get involved in if you decide to play music in your local pub. Perhaps someone like me cannot be helped but maybe sharing my experiences can help others avoid the slippery slope that starts so innocently with nothing more than a Pink Floyd LP and bag of crappy weed. It’s too late for me.
So, here, the consequence of my addiction, Ghosts. It’s filled with relatively austere acoustic arrangements. That’s just where I am at right now. All I can afford to do anymore is to be honest.
Since I am a (not)recovering addict, it could be a long time before I have means to properly print this album but if anyone should want to hear this or knows someone who might benefit from hearing this music, I am making available hand crafted copies through my website and at my shows. If anyone should choose to order a copy through the website for the remarkably low price of $9.99 (rounded up to ten bucks for simplicity sake… I suck at math. For people ordering online before the world ends (12.21.12), I will include a “bonus” disc of field recordings I made out in the wilderness of the songs (and some different ones) that make up Ghosts.
Remember your support helps. I promise that I will do my best to not buy more guitar strings with the proceeds and purchase bottles of whisky instead… and maybe even pay rent or something too.