When Jacob Jeffries (born Groten) was growing up in Broward County, his parents filled their home with music. "The Beatles, James Taylor, Paul Simon, old doo-wop," he recalls. "There was never silence. [And] soon after we learned to talk, we learned to sing along to everything."
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Sadly, in 2007, Jeffries's father passed away unexpectedly, just as he and his band were set to put out their first EP, Life As an Extra. "He was at the forefront of all of my thoughts," Jeffries says. "My dad's name was Jeffrey. I kind of adopted his first name as my stage name. I just like having him attached to me all the time."
Now only 24, Jeffries has been making music professionally for close to ten years. He and his band have opened for the Gin Blossoms and Sugar Ray. And they've put out three releases prior to their new full-length album, Tell Me Secrets, which will be released on Boom Boom 88, a label created by Jeffries and business partners. "I'm very pumped — this is our first release in over three years," he admits. "[But] this is hopefully the start of more to come."
Jacob Jeffries Band
Jacob Jeffries Band's Tell Me Secrets Album-Release Party: 9 p.m. Friday, May 18, at Gibson Guitar Showroom, 2751 N. Miami Ave., Miami; 305-573-3523; gibson.com. Admission is free. All ages.
In Jeffries's opinion, this is his band's best work ever. The record is filled with songs he calls "fictional ideas that I inject my emotions in." Just take the first single off the album, "Crazy Under the Moon," a story about a boy and girl who were once in love. Or another intensely personal song, "Over and Past," which Jeffries dedicated to his sister, who is also his best friend. Their father's passing was hard on her. And she, like all of us, struggles with romantic problems.
Tell Me Secrets, Jeffries marvels, is the result of endless hours of work. "The puzzle pieces are slowly coming together," he says of the build-up to the album's release. "All the gifts, they add up. All the experiences that you have on the road, the more you play together — the more you play, period — the tighter you're going to get and the more aware you're going to be of where you want to be."