I love being a songwriter, and that’s really what this record is about.”- Josh Kerr
With several years as a hit songwriter and producer under his belt, Josh Kerr is stepping out into the limelight for the first time as an artist, releasing his first project to date. The singer-songwriter’s debut album How Do You Remember Me premiered today, and it is the type of record that will make you feel something. Perfectly named, the album is both memorable and emotive. From sadness to nostalgia to retrospection, Kerr delivers eleven songs that will entice each and every type of country fan because of its raw honesty and creative innovation.
Kerr’s entire project is a relatable story, laced with thought-provoking lyrics and vulnerable vocals. Regardless of the instrumental arrangement or the production behind each track, every song displays his song-writing genius in the best light, while still maintaining a strong vocal delivery.
The record is anchored by two polarizing songs, including the title track and “The World Didn’t Stop Spinning.” The first is a pensive song that begs to understand how an ex-lover remembers the protagonist. We all have specific memories that bring us back to moments with the individual we once loved, but Kerr flips the script, wondering how his ex remembers him. On the other hand of the spectrum, the last track, “The World Didn’t Stop Spinning,” is a raw ballad sans production that painfully reminds listeners that life goes on; despite the devastation that comes from a break-up. In a hopeful sentiment, Kerr realistically depicts that things do, in fact, get better with time.
In the pre-released track, “In Case I Never See You Again” and the smooth, “Whole Damn Thing,” Kerr relies on his past experiences with love, but looks to the future with promise and excitement. The former is a fun tune about running into a potential love interest and not wanting to miss your opportunity. Similar to the vibe of Brett Young’s “Ticket to L.A.,” Kerr seizes the opportunity of potential on this track. The latter is the ultimate love song, where the singer acknowledges that everyone has a past, but that no one is too un-perfect to love. It also helps that the song is as catchy as can be!
“Girl I want the whole damn thing / The good, the bads, the highs, the lows / the in between / Every crack put back together / The broken piece / I want everything”
Kerr continues to reflect on his own experiences in the retrospective songs, “Still Our Town,” his debut single, “It Wasn’t That Long Ago,” and “Oklahoma.” The three tracks are contemporary and unique. “Still Our Town” is the age old story of feeling like your town, your favorite places, and your favorite activities no longer belong to you because they remind you too much of a broken relationship, while “It Wasn’t That Long Ago” solemnly reminds us that things can change in an instant. On the other hand, “Oklahoma” is a tearful ballad, where Kerr sings about losing a lover to her home state. Heather Morgan lent her vocals to the track, which completely upped the ante.
“And what’s worse I didn’t lose you to a person / I lost you to a place / Don’t wanna hate you Oklahoma / But you’re why she had to leave / Truth is that I don’t even know ya / I just know she loves you more than me.”
The theme of reflection and nostalgia continues to carry through in “If I’m Being Honest,” “How Do You Know, and “Love Me Now.” All three songs tug at your heartstrings, as the hurt is evident in each track. The first expresses the pain associated with the love of your life marrying someone else. “How Do You Know” is a stripped down vocal that focuses on the inner turmoil of getting over someone. Finally, with a more cheerful backing track, “Love Me Now” expresses the desire of wishing that a relationship could have happened now, rather than in the past. Similar to the sentiment of “Man Enough Now” by Chris Bandi, Kerr admits that things could have been different if we only knew what we know now.
Of course, the record would not be complete without a final, soft, love song. “Only” is one of the most romantic songs on the record. The soul and passion radiate throughout the song, and if you weren’t already a believer in Kerr’s talent, you will be after listening to this heartfelt track.
“Baby I’m only for you / Only / Nobody knows you like you / know me / I’ll do what I got to do / Girl, just to prove to you / That I won’t ever leave you / Only / Baby I’m only for you.”
Overall the record truly encompasses the seasons of Kerr’s life in a fresh and alluring way. Clearly, a songwriter at heart, Kerr made sure that all aspects of his debut project were authentic to him, whether it be his story or songs that he loves, which every music lover can appreciate.
How Do You Remember Me is now available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a listen below and check out more new recently released music here on our ‘New Country Music’ playlist. Be sure to give the playlist a follow for your weekly new country music fix.
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