Nashville’s Paul Pfau (rhymes with “wow”) is a modern-day troubadour, a skilled and eager listener, with a gift for setting the truths of love, life and loss to music. His talent for taking in and re-interpreting life’s narrative was honed in six months of personal silence brought on by a threatening polyp on his vocal chords.During this period of forced quiet, Pfau made ends meet by playing guitar in other bands, and by studying the stories of others. His musical inspiration was drawn from his parents relationship, and from the great music of 70s singer-songwriters like James Taylor, as well as current artists like John Mayer and Dave Matthews. Upon healing, Pfau took his talents to Season 8 of The Voice, where as a member of Team Pharrell, he was fortunate enough to work with and be mentored by the likes of Lionel Richie and Nate Ruess (fun., The Format).
The Great American Love Story EP is a concept album, a collection of songs with a finite beginning, middle and end. Boy and girl meet, fall in love, drift apart, work through struggle, and build a life together. Even though the story does have a classically happy ending, the real pain of relationship is present, unblinking in its ambiguity. Pfau is specific enough to draw listeners in, without giving away the goose. “The lyrics definitely tell a love story, but only one drawn in black and white. The colors are meant to come from the person listening, they can paint their own experiences on to what they’re hearing”, says Pfau. “The record uses a male-female relationship, though the genders assigned to each character are meant to channel stereotypes more than anything. The notion of gender is flexible, as well.”
Pfau is a natural collaborator, and the album was produced and co-written with Austin Bello (bassist and vocalist, Forever The Sickest Kids), with one exception. The EP’s denouement, “See You Better” was co-written with Nashville songwriter Jordan Lawhead. Pfau is also collaborating with fans on social media, regularly sharing the love story of others on his Facebook page. He is currently touring in support of his latest single, “I See the World”, a song about love and family, understanding and perspective.
“The music that I’m writing and releasing is really mirroring who I am and where I am at that time in my life. It’s easy to perform songs when they’re very true.” So says JD Eicher, the Youngstown, OH-area born and bred musician who released The Middle Distance via Rock Ridge Music on May 6, 2016. “I’m really glad that my career has taken the longer, ‘scenic’ route, because the music I’m writing now has a certain truth to it that I’m not sure I would have found otherwise.”
The Middle Distance marks the first album Eicher will issue since sunsetting the moniker, JD Eicher & the Goodnights, used on the trilogy of titles, The Shape of Things, Shifting, and Into Place, released previously. Why the change? Eicher explains: “It’s really just a shortening of the name. The band is still together, and this was a careful decision we made together. It felt natural with the conclusion of our album trilogy project, the personal nature of this new music, and a desire to simplify.”
Eicher has noted that the common themes running through his previous three releases are “love, hope, and acceptance.” Common sense would call for speculating whether there is a common thread that ties together the ten songs found on The Middle Distance. “Not a premeditated one,” he is quick to clarify. “I really wanted to just sit down and write the best songs I could, saying what I needed to say at the time. It’s more of a journal entry/diary-type approach this time around.”
Born in Albany, GA, raised in Greensboro, NC, Steve blends acoustic guitar with catchy, melodic hooks and hip, clever lyrics to form his upbeat and fun musical style. Steve studied music performance at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC and plays stages ranging from The House of Blues, The Rock Boat music festival, all the way to acoustic home shows. He has been fortunate enough to tour the country (solo & full band) with national acts like Sister Hazel & Michael Tolcher. His most two most recent albums have been nominated for “Album Of The Year” at The 12th & 15th annual Independent Music Awards. Steve also loves film, golf, sports, cigars… & high-fives.