Artist of the week: Sturgill Simpson
Sturgill Simpson is an American country music singer-songwriter. As a native of Jackson, Kentucky, he has deep southern roots and started his musical career as the leader of Sunday Valley, a muscular roots band that became a cult sensation in the beginning of the millennium. His profile kept growing in popularity when he went solo in 2012. First, with High Top Mountain (2013), an energetic debut that gave a new life to the outlaw record sub-genre; and, soon after, with the splendid Metamodern Sounds in Country Music, a sublime collection of songs that, in spite of maintaining its debt to Waylon Jennings, manages to include science fiction to his themes of love, religion and labor and to soak its sonic landscape in an electrifying and psychedelic craftsmanship that brings to mind the classic 1972 eponymous solo album of the great Jerry Garcia.
The recently released A Sailor’s Guide To Earth is simultaneously, and by far, his most ambitious and eclectic work to date. Which is quite surprising if we consider that this is a conceptual album where each song can be heard as a paragraph of a moving letter to his newborn son, teaching him how to be a man. Yes, it’s old-fashioned. But it moves you only due to its sheer musicianship and sincerity.
João Pedro da Costa is a web studies scholar and a music fan.