I was made familiar with Jeff Buckley by his version of the song Hallelujah, which I feel is where most people know him from. In September, Hallelujah had come on in my music shuffle and prompted me to listen to some of Buckley’s other work. Though I overall enjoy his discography, Grace is definitely the stand out album.
The seventh song on the album, “Lover, You Should’ve Come Over” has got to be my favorite track on the album. The song takes you on a full journey, starting slow and mellow and building to the climax where Buckley belts his heart out. The song, which was inspired by a break up he recently went through, is about regrets he has about his recent relationship and how he wants her back again. Buckley’s heart wrenching lyrics paired with his strong vocals make for an extremely emotionally intense song.
"Grace", the second track of the album, has a more upbeat instrumental with a lot of acoustic guitar in the mix, a running theme throughout the album. The song is about not being afraid of what life is going to throw at you, even death, because you are happy and motivated by the love in your life. The already deep meaning of the song resonated even more with fans after Buckley unfortunately passed in 1997 at the age of thirty.
Though the original release of the album is only eleven songs, the Legacy Edition of Grace includes many other amazing tracks. My two favorites have to be his cover of "Mama, You Been on My Mind" as well as his cover of "The Other Woman". Though all of the extra tracks are studio outtakes or alternate versions, the understated vibe of these tracks have a certain charm to them.
Mama, You Been on My Mind is such a calming song in general. The original version sung by Bob Dylan is great in its own way, it has a much happy, folk-like vibe to it. Jeff Buckley’s version feels like a completely different song due to the different vibe. It is a lot more mellow and makes what was once a happy song feel really sad.
Similarly, Buckley’s version of The Other Woman, originally sung by Nina Simone, is my personal favorite version of the song. Though Lana Del Rey and Simone’s versions are both beautiful, hearing the song sung by a man makes it seem like a completely different song. Not to mention, the song shows off Buckley’s vocal range in ways other songs on the album do not.
Overall, the album Grace is definitely one of my no skip albums, and I highly recommend you check it out.