Early James, the Alabama native and latest signing to Dan Auerbach’s Easy Eye Sound roster, has shared the music video for “It Doesn’t Matter Now,” his latest single off Singing for My Supper (Easy Eye Sound, 3/13), via an interview with Billboard.
Director Tim Hardiman says about the making of the video, “The subject matter for this song is pretty heavy. I felt there needed to be some aggression on screen but didn’t want it to play out like a typical break up. For some reason, Sideshow Bennie, whom I worked with several years ago, popped in my head. I looked him up and learned he was now working with a sidekick, Anna Fiametta. When I read how they met, I thought it was a funny story that would fit the song. The thought of them inflicting pain on each other, and the pleasure they receive from it, was intriguing. I pitched the idea to Early and I’m grateful he got it and trusted my vision for his song.” Watch the video and read Early’s interview with Billboard here.
Early James releases his debut album, Singing for My Supper, via Easy Eye and Nonesuch Records on March 13, 2020. The album spans hard-charging blues, wistful folk, and ages-old pop crooning, anchored by the singer’s voice that oscillates from gravel-gruff shout to a honey-smooth whisper. James’ inspirations run from Fiona Apple and Tom Waits to the Southern gothic poets, as heard in the album’s darker themes and in the wry humor with which he writes about them. Singing for My Supper is available for pre-order on all formats here.
Recently, Early James also shared “Blue Pill Blues,” the first single from Singing for My Supper, via an interview with American Songwriter. American Songwriter calls Early an “emerging alt-folk star” and say of the song: “‘Blue Pill Blues’ is a stellar first track and one that showcases the unique—and quick—transitions that James’ vocals can make. He deftly switches from a melodic whisper to a gravely, if not guttural, growl to drive home his all-too-relatable lyrics.” Listen to the song and read James’ interview here.
Early James has confirmed a headlining show at Nashville’s Analog on February 6, as well as tour dates throughout the winter and spring with The Lone Bellow, Shovels & Rope, and The Marcus King Band (full dates below). Tickets and more information for all dates are available here.
Early James’ debut features ten wide-ranging songs, co-produced by Auerbach and David “Fergie” Ferguson, and is full of world-weary wisdom. “Blue Pill Blues” details a period when James, who was being treated for depression, quit his antipsychotic medication cold turkey. “High Horse” is a lament of the ways his adolescent excitement faded with the arrival of the vices of adulthood, while “Easter Eggs” finds the songwriter coming to terms with some of the darker sides of his heredity.
Auerbach, who decided he needed to produce the singer’s debut album after watching just two seconds of a video of James performing, says: “every line has to mean something to him, personally. It’s not good enough to just write a good song, it needs to have a deeper meaning. He’s unlike any person I’ve ever worked with. He’s not writing a song to be universal; he’s writing a song for him.”
Singing for My Supper is the thirteenth release on Dan Auerbach’s Easy Eye Sound label and is distributed by Auerbach’s label Nonesuch Records. Easy Eye Sound is built equally around Auerbach’s Easy Eye Studio in Nashville, where The Black Keys recorded their last two albums, and around the collection of famous session musicians that have come to call the studio home. Additional releases have included records by Yola, Marcus King, Robert Finley, Kendell Marvel, Leo Bud Welch, Jimmy “Duck” Holmes, Shannon & The Clams, Shannon Shaw, Sonny Smith, Dee White, and Link Wray. Auerbach says, “Sometimes I feel I created my own Field of Dreams. I built the studio because I knew something was going to happen. I built it to accommodate live musicians playing, and then all of a sudden the best musicians in Nashville show up, and it’s happening.”