Jake Allen crafts a kaleidoscopic sound that plunges the curious listener into a world of endless sonic possibilities, incorporating prog-pop, waves of ambient instrumentals, and complex musical layers. Allen showcases the guitar, harnessing every nuance of the instrument and transforming it into an ethereal, shape-shifting creature that bends both notes and time.
Allen explores numerous musical styles with his guitar wizardry, ranging from lullaby-like dreams to burgeoning anthems. A documentarian of sorts, Allen’s immersive storytelling and emotional vocal performance offer a multi-timbral journey through time and space. The constant groove of driving drums, bewitching guitar hooks, and the whisper of a longing voice spark wonder, evoking similarities to pop music’s golden ‘90s era. His fourth album, “Affirmation Day” provides a snapshot of shifting perspectives and personal growth through the means of signature fingerpicking, percussive guitar tapping, and lush musical arrangements.
Allen is heavily involved in every stage of the studio process, including writing, producing, and mixing his own albums, as well as performing each instrument. When translating to a live setting, Allen either synthesizes the components of his studio albums into an eclectic solo performance, or stays true to his lush productions with the Jake Allen Band. This dynamic approach allows the freedom to perform both alone and as a fully-outfitted collective, capable of rendering the full span of Allen’s recordings.
As a solo artist, Allen utilizes impeccably timed live looping to create a captivating one-man show. Steeped in years of live performance and well-versed in an array of instruments, Allen’s dexterity is only amplified when he wields a single guitar. In an almost hypnotic display, he explores every inch of the instrument with unwavering confidence and creativity. Strings dance as they are plucked awake from their resting tension; percussive rhythms echo; harmonics ring brightly; and intricate chords emerge from each warm strum.
Despite an endearing nomadic tendency that comes naturally with the territory of touring musicianship, Allen has a knack for finding his way back home to the peaceful refuge of Northern Michigan between travels.
Early on, Allen’s path was shaped by a musical upbringing and the tension that accompanies a life devoted to the arts. Spending a number of years wandering through the proverbial (and sometimes literal) wilderness of the music industry, Allen has released four albums, toured tirelessly across the country and overseas, and laid the kind of robust foundation capable of sustaining a long and flourishing career.
While continuing to evolve as a prolific artist, Allen’s work has garnered a loyal fanbase , resonating with both audiences and critics alike. Vents Magazine noted his “masterful guitar work” that “melts in your heart,” while Music Emissions praised his ability to “make traditional sounds relevant in the modern era.”
Allen has shared the stage with The Accidentals, Keller Williams, Mike Dawes, Andy McKee, and Guthrie Govan. His performances have included NAMM, Hoxeyville Music Festival, Blissfest, and Winnetka Music Festival. He is endorsed by Takamine Guitars and has traveled to Europe, China, Japan, and Russia as a clinician for the guitar company. He is also sponsored by ToneWoodAmp, Apex Strings, Rees Harps, and Wazinator Stomp Pads.