THIS SHOW STARTS AT 7:30 – WE’VE ADDED THE EASY LEAVES AS AN OPENER, THEN A FULL CONCERT BY J.P. HARRIS & the Tough Choices!
In today’s musical culture, the word “authenticity” has pretty much lost all meaning. What used to represent something bona fide and true is now just watered-down marketing speak, stamped onto press releases without a second thought.
In short, J.P. Harris plays Country Music. Not “Americana,” not “Roots,” “Folk,” or any other number of monikers used to describe a slew of spin-off genres; he plays from the foundation of these styles, the music that has influenced four generations of songwriters. In a world where prefixes have been added to the term “Country,” JP simply sticks to the old-fashioned sounds that have called to him. Referencing influences would be like describing each stitch in a quilt; every scrap of fabric tells a story of how the weathered and comfortable blanket came to be…
Born six minutes before Valentine’s Day in Montgomery AL in 1983, JP’s life was to be full of color, travel, hardship, and grace from the day he first saw the world. After more than six generations in Alabama, his family would leave seeking work, first to California and then on to Nevada. He left home on foot at the age of 14, traveling via thumb and freight train, living the next 4 years mostly from a backpack, tarp, a bedroll. Eventually landing in the northeast, he worked as a farm laborer, equipment operator, lumberjack, luthier, and carpenter.
In the summer of 2011, after two years of touring without much in the way of recorded music, Harris made a trip to the sweltering heat of south Louisiana. In an old Cajun cook shack he and a few pals pounded out an album in three days, and shortly after it’s completion, he made the move to Nashville. JP released his all-original debut “I’ll Keep Calling” in May of 2012 on Cow Island Music. Shortly after it’s release, without the aide of publicists or a large label’s bankroll, it won “Best Country Album of 2012″ from The Nashville Scene, the same honor at the Independent Music Awards, a cameo on NPR’s American Routes, and as JP says “a whole mess of other stuff in the papers and on the internet.” (Two songs were also licensed to the soundtrack of 2012’s “At Any Price,” starring Dennis Quaid and Zac Efron.)
Rolling Stone named J P Harris one of fall 2014’s “Country Tours Not To Miss,” as well as one of “21 Must-See Country Acts at SXSW 2015.” When he isn’t touring, JP can usually be found repairing an old house, splitting wood in his backyard, or digging through the trash for useable refuse. http://www.ilovehonkytonk.com
Harris has been writing and performing country music for nearly a decade now, releasing his debut album, I’ll Keep Calling, in 2012. He followed that album with Home Is Where the Hurt Is in 2014, which only saw his star rise both among country fans and critics at major outlets like Rolling Stone. JP was also referenced by Eagles frontman Don Henley in a 2015 interview with Hey Reverb as making “thoughtful, authentic music.”
With his forthcoming album “Sometimes Dogs Bark at Nothing,” he’s back after a four- year hiatus to remind folks what a lifetime dedicated to country music really looks and sounds like. Sure to please fans of his hardscrabble earlier work, this new release also finds the acclaimed songwriter and vocalist stretching himself musically and personally.
In just about every way, Sometimes Dogs Bark at Nothing is a recorded manifestation of Harris’ growth over the last four years. He’s become more comfortable in his singing, more confident in his artistic direction, and more adventurous in his sonic palette. He’s letting listeners in to some of his most difficult struggles and turning a compassionate eye to the struggles of others.
The Easy Leaves will open as a duo for this show at 7:30. The Easy Leaves have been hired as sole support on shows and runs by Dwight Yoakam, Junior Brown, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Asleep At The Wheel, Billy Joe Shaver, Robert Earl Keen, Blind Boys of Alabama, Jim Lauderdale, Ry Cooder, Ricky Skaggs, Kasey Chambers and Los Lobos. The Easy Leaves are fantastic live! A real deal honky tonkin good time!
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