Let me first say that I hate folk-pop music. God, how I hate it. I hate it because invariably the folk is the smallest consideration in the equation. It's usually just standard pop music with one acoustic guitar in the mix. Or now, with a banjo. Hell, I don't even really like "folk" music that much. Too often "folk" means Martin guitar-slinging singer-songwriter with overly simplified emo songs. What I like is music that feels like it's made with other people in mind. Not one person looking to get out some unresolved emotions, but one person who wants to make songs that can touch other people and resonate in someone else's life. Andrew Duhon is just that kind of songwriter, and I found myself utterly won over listening to his new album, The Moorings (which drops April 30).
Duhon writes folk-pop, but not the kind I hate. He writes songs that will trick lazy listeners into believing they're disposable pop songs, when really there are deep and solidly rooted foundations beneath the surface. That's why his music works. Pop is meant to be shallow and ethereal, to evaporate in the summer sun. It's a bit of a mirage, really. Or maybe an iceberg would be a better metaphor. Duhon's music has depth because he's drawing not only from different traditions–the hazy harmonica folk of "Shelter You Through", the burned-out Delta roadhouse wreck of "Sidestep Your Grave", the Celtic-tinged sea-drenched singalong of "The Mooring"–but he's also drawing water from a deeper well of human experience. The hairline fractures that run through his vocals inflect his singing with enough humility that you find yourself drawn into the song, looking for the story behind the lyrics. As for Duhon's story, I really don't know anything about him. I know it's a good album when I don't even care who the artist is. When I'm not looking for a story to help me understand the artist, I know that I've found music that was meant to reach further than just one person.
For More Info about Andrew Duhon, check out this quick piece in the very very excellent blog CMT Edge.
This post originally appeared on the Hearth Music Blog. Check out our website and roam through our blog to discover your next favorite artist! We're dedicated to presenting today's best Roots/Americana/World musicians.