News

Jeff Healey honored with posthumous album

Heal My Soul features musician’s “lost” tracks

By David Sands
April 1, 2016

Jeff Healey is gone, but the blind Canadian jazz and blues-rock musician lives on through his music.

Now eight years after his death from cancer, his estate has released something special for his fans: a posthumous album called Heal My Soul. The new recording, which features a dozen “lost” tracks, came out on March 25.

Healey’s estate has has put together the recording to commemorate what would have been his 50th birthday.

Blind from early childhood due to a rare form of eye cancer, Healey was drawn to music from an early age. He first became acquainted with the guitar at three-years-old and developed a unique way of playing that involved resting the instrument on his lap. This gave him an extraordinary amount of control over his guitar playing and resulted in the distinctive style for which he’s known.

The guitarist, singer and trumpeter made his first big splash on the music scene in the late 1980s with his rock group, the Jeff Healey Band. Their 1988 debut, See the Light, charted in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. Healey went on to sell millions of albums around the world, get a Grammy nomination and win a Canadian Juno award. In addition to his work with the Jeff Healey Band, he also toured and recorded with his jazz outfit, Jeff Healey’s Jazz Wizards, and released several solo albums.

After his death, Roger Costa, co-administrator for Healey’s estate, went through his archives and found the songs that would ultimately become the tracks on Heal My Soul. They were recorded with the Jeff Healey band during a creative four-year period when that preceded the recording of their last album, 2000’s Get Me Some.

Due to legal wrangling, it took about six years after Healey’s death for Costa to gain access to the master tapes and begin work on the new record.

Costa recently spoke about Heal My Soul in an interview on the Brave Words website.

“There’s a lot of stuff on this album that’s really heavy,” Costa said. “And the playing on this record—and even in Jeff’s vocals—it’s like he’s on fire. I think that all of the emotional turmoil that he was going through, he just channeled it out in his music.”

“I’ve been living with this thing for years, and I still get goosebumps when I hear the solo in ‘Temptation’ or any of the songs on this album,” he added. “It’s pretty powerful stuff.”

Title: Heal My Soul
Artist: Jeff Healey
Date Released: March 25, 2016
Label: Convexe Entertainment/Universal