From Grammy-nominated, critically acclaimed singer-songwriter Brent Cobb, comes his "southern eclectic" new album, Southern Star.
Brent Cobb, a Georgia native, not only calls the American south his home but also draws profound inspiration from this region in his Grammy-nominated songwriting. He refers to this unique blend of influences as "southern eclectic," and it's prominently featured in his latest album, Southern Star.
Cobb's music is a reflection of the diverse cultures and musical heritage found in the south. Icons like Otis Redding, Little Richard, the Allman Brothers, James Brown, and Ray Charles all hail from this same area, and their sounds have left an indelible mark on Cobb's work.
His new album consists of ten powerful tracks that capture the essence of southern culture, blending country-soul songwriting, relaxed grooves, and timeless storytelling. Cobb began crafting these songs after leaving Nashville, where he had a successful career both as a solo artist and a songwriter for other country artists. His return to Georgia marked a period of change, coinciding with the birth of his second child and the loss of his close friend, Jason "Rowdy" Cope, from the Steel Woods. The album's title in fact, is a tribute to a local bar that Cobb and Cope frequented.
"Rowdy was like my older brother," says Cobb. "He loved the music that came out of Georgia, and he helped me appreciate it even more. A lot of artists like to branch out and become experimental as their career continues, but I sort of go the opposite way. I feel like I can never go wrong if I continue to get closer and closer to the core of who I am and what I love, musically. Coming back to Georgia helped me with that. Southern Star is the sound of me getting closer to the source."
The songwriter's intention with this album was to get closer to his musical roots and the essence of who he is as an artist. While his songs may seem easygoing and reflective of rural life, they carry deeper messages. For example, "It's a Start" celebrates the simple pleasures of Southern living but also encourages mindfulness and embracing new opportunities at one's own pace.
To capture the authentic Southern sound, Cobb recorded the album at the iconic Capricorn Sound Studios in Macon, a historic location that saw the likes of the Marshall Tucker Band, Charlie Daniels, and Percy Sledge. He exclusively used local musicians, emphasizing the importance of showcasing the talents of Georgia natives.
The album's tracks explore various facets of Southern music, from country-fried funky-tonk in songs like "Devil Ain't Done" to the laid-back folk sounds of the 1970s in "Patina" and "Kick the Can." "When Country Came Back To Town" even pays homage to the music communities of Los Angeles and Nashville, acknowledging the unsung heroes of the independent country movement.
Cobb's recent experiences on the road as Luke Combs' opening act for stadium-sized crowds add depth to Southern Star. The album captures him at the peak of his songwriting prowess and serves as a heartfelt tribute to his Southern roots, made even more meaningful by his extensive travels.
Southern Star is a testament to Brent Cobb's deep connection to his southern heritage, both musically and environmentally. It pays homage to the south's profound influence on the world of music, emphasizing its funky and sentimental, simple yet complex qualities that have shaped the musical landscape.