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MP3 Francis Jocky - Mr Pain

Simple but always groovy. The melody is omnipresent. Let''s call it "Mélo-groove".

12 MP3 Songs
POP: Folky Pop, WORLD: African


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Francis Jocky is one of the most exciting songwriters in the modern music scene. His music is a mellow blend of fantastic pop songwriting, international sounds and flavors, and soulful instrumentation. From Africa to France to the American stage, Francis Jocky is an artist with universal appeal.

Francis Jocky was born in Douala-Cameroon, and was the third of four children. Francis has always felt that his family position not the oldest, not the youngest, or the only girl like his older sister contributed to his love of music. From an early age Francis learned to express himself through song and by the age of 12 he was already writing original songs.

Francis started playing piano when he was still in Cameroon, participating in school bands and childhood contests. At the age of fifteen he moved to France and before long Francis was caught up in the exciting French music scene.

Francis and his brother Bobby started the band “Class” with their friend Patrick Dage and were immediately signed to a French label. Though playing with “Class” was a good education for Francis, he began to realize that what he really wanted was to have complete control over the process, the writing, everything. While Francis was busy promoting “Class,” he was making plans to form his own label.

While playing in Monte Carlo, earning money to fund the formation of his own record label, Francis was approached by Jon Anderson, lead singer of “Yes.” Anderson offered Francis a spot as the 2nd keyboardist for a “Yes” world tour but after hearing some of Francis’ own compositions, Anderson was impressed by Jocky’s skills and proposed that the two of them form their own band. In 1998, Francis and Jon Anderson formed “Know,” and were signed by Eagle Rock Entertainment.
Francis composed fourteen of the songs that became part of “Know’s” critically acclaimed album “The More You Know.”

Playing with Jon Anderson was a good experience, but Anderson’s attention was split by a “Yes” tour and Know was under-promoted. “Again, I learned that you have to do it yourself to have real control.” says Jocky.

Francis kept busy performing at “The Tribute to Sting,” and playing his own compositions in clubs across France. Few knew how to classify the music he was trying to make. Francis’s influences span the spectrum from Jackson Browne, Randy Newman and Motown greats like Stevie Wonder and Al Jarreau to jazz
masters like Miles Davis and Thelonius Monk. Francis wanted to make music that wasn’t constrained by genre classifications, with the sensibilities of jazz the accessibility of pop and the mellow grooves of soul and funk.

Over the next few years Francis participated in many high profile concerts. He was involved in the 2000 MIDEM music conference and in 2002 he put together some of his own concerts in France and was even fortunate enough to sing back up for Stevie Wonder while in Monte Carlo. In 2003 Francis brought together some of Paris’ best musicians for his own concert, which took place at La Scène in Paris. The response was huge and Paris media hailed him as “The New Sensation.” In late 2003, Francis was invited to the Nemo Music Festival around the Boston Music Awards. “I was impressed with the reaction of the audience,” he says, “for me it was huge.”

In 2004, Francis was approached by Eagle Rock Records to produce an album using South African music enhanced with Modern production. Francis took the producers role, taking the name of “Living Souls” for the project. When the album, “Ambient Africa” was released, it received critical praise from the media.

Now, having worked in the back and fore of the music industry, Francis has released his first solo album,
“Mr. Pain.” Each of the twelve tracks on Jocky’s debut contain the lessons and experience he has learned from his travels through the music world tempered by his innate sense of harmony and melody. As a solo artist, Francis is unbound by the expectations of his producers and is free to explore what he calls the “future” of
music; the blend of styles, genres, and sounds.

“I play music because I have something to say,” Francis says, “there are so many things that make you want to scream every day. You need to express them.” Francis Jocky may approach music from a standpoint of self expression but he is acutely aware of the public nature of the art. “We have to find a balance,” He says, “between what we want to say and the beauty of this art we all cherish.”

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