Schools, a Bowling Green, Ky.-based rock quartet led by songwriter Jeremi Simon, is preparing for the release of its eponymous debut album. Bred from the thriving music scene that birthed crowd-pleasers Cage the Elephant and Sleeper Agent, Schools is the latest Bowling Green band to perk the ears of Grammy-winning producer Jay Joyce.
Simon was a solo act prior to forming Schools with Russell Brooks (guitar, keys and vocals), Joey Bennett (bass) and Daniel Marlowe (drums), and made fast fans of Cage the Elephant, who personally suggested his music to Joyce.
“The first time I heard Jeremi sing, I was drawn to the honesty of his lyrics,” Joyce says. “The delivery was sad, but had an underlying sense of humor that I think is missing in a lot of today’s songwriters.”
Schools recorded the album, featuring 10 original songs, in Joyce’s Tragedy/Tragedy Studios in Nashville, Tenn. Like his songwriting hero, Neil Young, Simon’s songs demonstrate a broad range of musical ability and a strong sense of lyrical honesty.
Whether it’s the energetic punk vibe of “Think I Might Be an Alien,” or the haunting feel of the ballad “Beautiful Disaster,” Simon always wears his heart on his sleeve when writing songs.
“They’re very personal,” Simon says. “It’s describing what I was feeling or dealing with in a way that’s not really straightforward. I put my own spin on it. It’s a glimpse of what’s in my head.”
In the time leading up to the album‘s release, Schools has been playing its biggest shows yet, including a stop at the 2012 SXSW Festival.
While the band is excited to see what waits on the horizon, Simon is just as eager to sit down and write his next song.
“I can tell when I’m about to start writing a lot of songs,” Simon says. “It’s this weird feeling I get, and all of sudden I start coming up with all these ideas. I love it. It’s like having a baby or something.”
Schools Track List:
1. All The Time
2. Bones for Meat
3. The War
4. Paper Hearts
5. Think I Might Be an Alien
6. Beautiful Disaster
8. If I Wake Up
9. Say What You Wanted To Say
10. Big Dumb Head