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April In Your Eyes - A Tribute to the Songs of John Lilly

by Various Artists

  • Streaming + Download

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    Purchasable with gift card

      $7 USD  or more


  • Compact Disc (CD) + Digital Album

    The first printing of this CD will be a limited run of 300 copies. Each one will be shipped, by hand, from John Lilly himself. Artwork by Lisa Elmaleh and Jackson Emmer.

    Includes unlimited streaming of April In Your Eyes - A Tribute to the Songs of John Lilly via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    ships out within 3 days
    edition of 300  15 remaining

      $15 USD or more 




* = Previously unreleased song.

All recordings were created specifically for this album and recorded remotely during the COVID lockdowns of 2020.

Liner notes by Jackson Emmer:

I first heard John Lilly in an unassuming hotel lobby on a crisp Carolina evening. He was huddled in a corner, jamming with a handful of guitar players attending the 2016 Southeast Regional Folk Alliance conference. John’s voice attracted me instantly. Calm, gentle, powerful, desperate, and loving- it packed a lifetime of emotion into a two minute song, and often, into a single word. John sang a honky tonk number, timeless, and as good as any I’d ever heard. When it ended, I asked him who wrote it, and John said it was his.
I didn’t believe him, so I stuck around to see what else he had to sing. Every song was as good as the last. Enduring, straightforward, gold-standard type tunes– The kind of songs I hoped to one day write. After an hour of this, I was a John Lilly fan for life. Few artists have managed to accomplish what he has done. His writing is familiar, but also fresh. His delivery is rough around the edges, but somehow flawless. His songs are both personal and universal, without feeling diluted.

Over the years, John and I have become friends, and have even written songs together. I consider him a mentor, and an inspiration. When I began assembling artists for this tribute, it was easy to find musicians who share my appreciation for John. His friends and previous collaborators jumped at the chance to participate, and to honor his songs.

If you’re already familiar with his catalogue, then this new collection will reinforce what you already know: John Lilly is a modern songwriting master. If you’re new to his music, I hope this album will serve as a proper introduction to America’s best kept musical secret.

Thank you for listening, - Jackson Emmer -

April 2021


released April 16, 2021

Produced by Jackson Emmer.

All songs written by John Lilly.

"Dreamers and Fools" written by John Lilly and Jackson Emmer.
"The Drifting Tune" written by John Lilly and Georgia Lilly.

Contact Jackson Emmer for all inquiries: diamondranchrecords@gmail.com


Mixed by Jackson Emmer.
Mastered by Jackson Emmer and Chris Latham.

Track 6 "If I Could Fly" mixed by Jon Vezner.
Track 7 "The Jackpot" mixed by Dan Bailey and Jackson Emmer.
Track 11 "Somewhere In Texas" mixed by Clay Parker.

Track 12 features Lydia Darrow on harmony vocals.

Album photograph by Lisa Elmaleh.

Diamond Ranch Records - 2021


all rights reserved



John Lilly Elkins, West Virginia

Multi-talented artist originally from IL, has been in WV since 1992. Award-winning songwriter and singer, former tour guide at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, former member of the Green Grass Cloggers dance troupe, and former member of several popular bands. Performs and records solo, with the bands Blue Yonder and The Lillys. Weekly classic country music radio show - SoundCloud.com ... more

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