After a hiatus, I can't wait to be back blogging about some of the best indie music out right now. We get started by taking "The Beach" EP by Judd Harris for a spin.
Judd Harris has had a pretty strange trip to get from where he was, to where he is today.
From his roots in New Orleans to having a short run on American Idol, and now, living in the Dominican Republic and creating the most personal music of his career, to say it's been a journey is an understatement.
The move from New York City to Las Terrenas, Dominican Republic in 2016 was inspired by the death of a friend, but his upcoming EP was actually triggered by the lockdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
"It’s like we’d all been sleepwalking and the pandemic shook us awake, wondering how and why we ended up here. The theme of wanting something more runs through The Beach EP, whether that’s a big life change, a childhood dream, a special someone, or just a beach vacation.”
Well, I for one am excited to jump into the EP with a coffee in hand and some headphones on my dome. I'll give my thoughts after the jump.
The opening track, "Take Me Down" is a breezy, Jack Johnson-esque number that has an absolutely infectious chorus that you'll be humming along with on the first listen and fully singing along with by the third time you hear it. Such a pleasant tune that is well-sung and well-played. Simple and effective. Good opener. "Simple Life" has earnest lyrics that are matched by Harris' earnest delivery. This really tells the tale of he and his wife's journey from the hustle and bustle of New York City to the Dominican Republic for a life less complicated. "Let You Know" is a little less easy on the ears, but that doesn't make it any less likable. Judd Harris has a niche and he sure does lean into it. While each song has a similar vibe, they remain distinct and different. Another solid track. the EP ends with "Endless Days" and it's another lyrically earnest delight of a track. This one tugs on some nostalgia strings, and does a great job of making you feel while you listen. A solid end to a pretty great EP.
If you're a fan of Jack Johnson and Ben Harper and any earnest singer-songwriter types that have a bit of an island feel, the latest from Judd Harris will be right in your wheelhouse. Super fun stuff by a really talented guy. American Idol missed out on this one.