Jim Heald – CHIAROSCURO:  You’ll get a dash & a taste of everything that’s been good about music over the last 30 years (or so) when you listen to Jim’s new release… a whole cast of characters join to make his album a success (Jim Heald: Acoustic Guitar, Telecaster, Bass and Vocals; Lea: Backing Vocals; Jack Reale: Bass on Juliet, and kibitzing at the drum sessions; Lisa Sawyer: Backing Vocals on Journey into Light; Greg Lowry: Lap Steel on Don’t Know Where I’m Bound; Steve Bloom (Music by Hand): Drums and Percussion; Jim Heald: Midi Drums on Great 2B Alive and Somebody Else’s Problem), and that’s exactly what it is.  The laid-back guitar on “I Had A Dream Last Night” is excellent… very enjoyable.  The swing mood on “It’s Great 2B Alive” is total cool – but it was the lead guitar on the 4:32 “Somebody Else’s Problem” that got my vote for favorite track of the eleven offered up.  Is it jazz?  Hardly, but Jim’s music definitely represents the kind of Americana I (& many of us) grew up on… high-energy & FUN!  I give Jim a HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, with an “EQ” (energy quotient) rating of 4.97.  Get more information at Jim’s website.   Rotcod Zzaj” - Dick Metcalf

Rotcod Zzaj

This DC area folkie came to my attention via an album sent to my German editor in Folkworld who remailed it back to the US for me to review. I have been a fan ever since and it is great to see that this new album even exceeded my lofty expectations. Heald has a fine guitar style and technique with an excellent voice to match. He adds just enough instrumentation to fill things out but allowing plenty of space to create different atmospheric textures. He can go from psychedelic folk to rootsier folk to a more mainstream pop folk style. It never is dull and he gets it all together with his strong central presence. Songs to try first:Juliet’s on Fire - This is how acoustic psychedelic folk is supposed to sound, be it 2015 or 1967.I Had a Dream Last Night - Simple enough folk song with fine lyrics and haunting backing vocals.Takes Me Away - This reminds me of a 60s pop/folk hybrid that is radio friendly, but really cool as well.   http://dcrocklive.blogspot.com/   ” - David Hintz

DC Rock Live - Reviews

Jim Heald "Old Jalopy" Own label; 2012 home.comcast.net/~jimheald/This singer-songwriter lives just a few miles south of me in Alexandria, Virginia and learned guitar years ago in Chicago, where I have also lived. I have not seen his live show, but hope to soon as he does a fine job with these original folk songs. The album starts rather light-hearted and there are some country touches as well. I preferred the deeper material such as “I’m not the one” or “Juliet’s on Fire” which have a bit of distant psyche quality to the guitars or the vocal work in the latter song. He employs a full band, back-up singers, or just voice and acoustic guitar depending on the song and the variety works well. There is a Bob Theil quality to some of the better songs here, which is high praise from me. This is a fine record and worthy of future listens, but I am definitely going to put “Juliet’s on Fire” on a play list with Theil, Jackson Frank, and Meic Stephens as it holds up every bit to the best of those major artists. © David Hintz ” - David Hintz

Folk World (Germany)

Old Jalopy and Wings of Time   Jim Heald is een zanger met een uitstekende stem en mooi geselecteerde songs. author: Rootstime Freddy Celis   Jim Heald beschikt over een goede stem die weet te boeien en de aandacht van de luisteraar vast te houden, waardoor hij de boodschappen die hij in zijn teksten verwerkt moeiteloos weet over te brengen. Met de songs "The Thorns That Guard The Rose" en "I'm Not The One" werd Jim Heald twee keer genomineerd als finalist bij het Kerrville Folk Festival New Folk. Op het recentste schijfje "Old Jalopy" is er wat meer muzikale diversiteit te horen dan op "Wings Of Time". Zo is er een mix van jazz en blues in "Ginger & Fred" en in "Wristwatch", een vleugje country in de titelsong "Old Jalopy", een dosis fijnzinnige humor in "The Psychologist Song" en het spirituele lied "Don't You Know". Zelfs Carraïbische invloeden worden erbij gehaald in "Let's Get Away" en de liefde tussen Romeo en Julia wordt bezongen in "The Moon Is Shining". Voorts wordt nieuwe liefde, verloren liefde, het verlangen naar en het vinden van een nieuwe liefde, twijfels en verdriet bezongen in de diverse andere nummers. Kortom, voor elk wat wils. Jim Heald is een zanger met een uitstekende stem en mooi geselecteerde songs. Meer moet dat voor ons niet zijn. (valsam)” - Freddy Celis


CD: Wings Of Time Label: Missing Link Rating:  5 Stars Genre:  Folk     Some of the most interesting songs we have heard here at RMR.  Jim is an excellent song writer that also has the ability to sing very well.  Wings Of Time is an acoustic-folk CD that delivers a message with every track. Very powerful lyrics and soothing melodies. A great record for folk radio to air on their stations.  Roots Music Review, 2005”

Roots Music Report

Defenders of the Forest (1992). Jim Heald's third release is a pleasing blend of acoustic guitar/vocal pieces and a few ensemble originals featuring flute, mandolin, dobro, cello and other traditional instruments. The title song concerns the plight of the tropical rain forest, interweaving his acoustic guitar with a sonorous voice that richly expresses his concern. In contrast to the title cut, most of the songs are concerned with inner, emotional conflicts. "Chains of Love", a blues-styled number, and "Your Love Pours Down," with its smoky jazz riffs played on saxophone, are the highlights. His talent as a wordsmith and some lead electric guitar by Eric Blakely and Rich Brotherton make Defenders of the Forest worth picking up. (JM)  DIRTY LINEN #43 Dec/Jan 92-93” - JM

— Dirty Linen

Defenders of the Forest. Jim Heald is a modern-day balladeer. All his songs tell a story and have more to say than most people can comprehend in one sitting. On Defenders of the Forest Jim employs some of Austin's finest side-musicians. With Rich Brotherton and Eric Blakely sharing lead guitar duties, backing vocalists that include: Leeann Atherton, Susan Espinoza, and Lisa Sawyer, this album has a full, rich sound. On "Miguel's Song", Beth Galiger's lilting flute adds a hauntingly, airy dimension. this broad-based sound, complete with cello, viola, mandolin, saxophone, dobro, congas, and even zamponas sprinkled lightly throughout, give dynamics and grace to Jim's compositions. (Keith Ayres) TEXAS BEAT July 1992” - Keith Ayres

— Texas Beat

Defenders of the Forest. Jim Heald's latest tape, Defenders of the Forest is probably not as based on the environment as the name would suggest, but more on how he uses nature through analogies and description to express his thoughts about life and love in general. Each song is smothered in this sweet, folky, earthy romanticism, led by Heald's persuasive, acoustic guitar and lyrics, and nicely colored with occasional embellishments of cello, dobro, flute, mandolin, saxophone, and viola. Rich Brotherton and Eric Blakely's lead guitar strengthen and add depth to each song, and Leeann Atherton, Susan Espinoza, and Lisa Sawyer provide the soothing background vocals, all of which help to bring together a passionate musical landscape. (3 1/2 stars)   W. Michael Smith   AUSTIN CHRONICLE 6/4/93” - W. Michael Smith

— Austin Chronicle

Defenders of the Forest. Moody and sometimes aching tunes dealing with the love of this planet, its inhabitants, and life itself. Jim's expressive vocals paint the picture well with hints of John Prine's pacing and Roger McGuinn's smooth slur. A host of talented musicians help out here, playing various guitars, viola, zamponas, saxophone, mandolin, flute, dobro, cello, drums bass, and congas. A must. Bob Bunce GAJOOB #9, Winter '93” - Bob Bunce

— Gajoob

Standing on the Great Wall of China. Jim's from Austin, and has recorded nine of his own songs with just his voice and guitar. I like these tunes; they're thoughtful and personal, and Jim would be welcome to sing in my cafe anytime(if I owned one...). His vocals are close to John Prine's (but less nasal), and his guitar adds a basic, picked accompaniment with some melody worked in. The folk song fan may find this worthwhile. -Dan Maryon OPTION #23 Nov-Dec 1988” - Dan Maryon

— Option