NPR logo Nick Jaina: 'One Hand Washing the Other'

Nick Jaina: 'One Hand Washing the Other'

Singer-songwriter Nick Jaina hide caption

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Singer-songwriter Nick Jaina

Part of a folk rennaissance in Portland, Ore., Nick Jaina scrapped a studio recording of his album The 7 Stations to rerecord it in his kitchen. In a narrative rock style, Jaina produces songs rich with instrumentation and dark storytelling.

Back in 1995, Nick had an epiphane while at a college in California. He had the chance to do an archaeological dig at the famous San Juan Bautista Mission, and while digging in an abandoned well, he discovered an abalone cross. This led him on an "inexorable journey through the wells of human consciousness," he says. "Perhaps there was more to life than book learning?"

He has lived as a busboy in New Orleans, worked as a file clerk in the Trump Building on Wall Street in New York, been rescued by a minister in Indiana, and fallen off a bike in Ireland. In 2000, he played drums during with the Canadian folk band The Be Good Tanyas during their first tour.

Nick also produces. He recently worked on Gill Landry's Nettwerk Records debut, The Ballad of Lawless Soirez, set for release in January 2007 and produces albums by Portland bands Run On Sentence and The Maybe Happening. He will also produce a new solo album of his own, recorded on Elliott Smith's old piano.