Original Soundtrack

Jackpot

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The CD accompanying the Michael and Mark Polish film Jackpot seems like it was produced to fit the description of the word ambient. Sade guitarist/saxophone player Stuart Matthewman put together the Polish brothers' soundtrack to Twin Falls Idaho the year before this 2001 collection, and includes seven songs from that epic re-released alongside the 12 tracks that help make up this compilation. It's an amazing tapestry of sounds, music from different genres and time periods flowing seamlessly in a pleasant and highly entertaining mixture. George Jones' classic 1974 country tune "The Grand Tour" seems to be the model for Jackpot's karaoke singer seeking fame, one Sunny Holiday. The fact that Bobby Hebb's "Sunny" is included as part of the plot is all the more ingenious. Hebb's tune is on a zillion karaoke compilations proliferating on eBay in real life; a more perfect title and tune could not be found for people emulating greatness in bars, but never reaching the heights or developing the talent exhibited by the man whose song they try to sing, a man who performed on the entire Beatles tour of 1966. Grandaddy's "He's Simple" is a lovely drifting piece written by Jason Lytle that goes on for close to nine minutes. It's a mellow "2,000 Light Years from Home" that borrows much from Mick Jagger and Keith Richard's Their Satanic Majesties Request lost epic. Even the lyrics reference their "2000 Man" song from that '60s LP: "Are you giving in 2000 man?/Don't give in 2000 man." Cat Power's cover of Moby Grape's "Naked if I Want to Be" from her 2000 disc, The Covers Record, finds itself on an album with Patsy Cline's "Sweet Dreams," and it somehow works majestically along with Stuart Matthewman's spoken word and cosmic instrumental work. Chocolate Genius and the soundtrack producer combine talents on "Tell Her" as Matthewman does with Aya on "Mr. Karaoke" as well. The album works on its own, separate from the motion picture, as a pretty amazing collection of sounds comprising a complete and distinct fabric. A real sleeper worth seeking out.

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