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Jay Farrar

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Jay Farrar (born December 26, 1966 in Belleville, Illinois) is an American songwriter and musician currently based in St. Louis, Missouri. A veteran of two critically acclaimed music groups, Uncle Tupelo and Son Volt, he began his solo music career in 2001. Beyond his established talents as a songwriter, he is a guitarist, harmonicist, and a vocalist.

His musical style ranges from sparse, unaccompanied folk music to full rock and roll band arrangements comparable to Neil Young or Dinosaur Jr… His solo recordings also often include sound experiments, reminiscent of psychedelia, with a distinctly Eastern bent. One of the hallmarks of his sound is the use of alternate tunings on the guitar. His love for Woody Guthrie inspired a custom guitar made by Creston Lea of Vermont. The guitar was made from artifacts Jay gathered from the site of Guthrie’s childhood home. In 2012 the guitar was featured in a painting by modern artist Karl Haglund.

After the dissolution of Uncle Tupelo in 1994, Farrar formed Son Volt, whose original lineup released three albums in the late 1990s, before undergoing a hiatus in 1999. In 2005, the band re-formed with a different lineup and has since (as of May 2009) released four additional albums.

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