Before he was known for his own songwriting, Jason Wilber played many musical stages alongside the legendary John Prine. As Prine’s guitar player, Wilber cut his teeth on the live circuit in a big way, more recently becoming his musical director. Upon the country-folk icon’s passing due to complications of COVID-19 earlier this year, Wilber reflected on his time with his boss and friend for an American Songwriter piece. Now, a small piece of the “Zen of Prine” lives on in Wilber. He is exmplary roots artist with his own collection of world-weary reflections and offbeat poetic to share, and he’s been doing so since 1998’s Lost in Your Hometown.
Now, Wilber is hot on the release of an all-new cluster of songs. Titled Time Traveler, his latest is a contemplative collection of acoustic folk and Americana. When it comes to the allegories that he weaves, Wilber is unafraid of the supernatural and intergalactic. If the album title weren’t hint enough, Time Traveler features such songs as “The Disappearance of Bigfoot” and “Living in Space”. Musically, it’s serious, straight-shooting roots done up in a traditional style, making for a juxtaposition fully intended by the artist. At times irreverent, pensive, and worldly—and, at other times, all three at once—Time Traveler is a more-than-worthy new addition to Wilber’s expansive catalog.
Wilber reflects, “Time Traveler is about the science fiction that has become our modern world. Futurism contrasted with some of our traditional musical forms. I had no idea how timely the themes would be now as the album is coming out. Living together and living in isolation, living on the earth and living off the earth; the seasons and cycles we live through in our own lives, and that we see played out in history.”