This weekend in Mobile, Alabama is the 2018 SouthSounds Music and Arts Festival. This festival is the first festival in the country dedicated to showcasing the best emerging and independent Southern music and art. The 2017 event brought an estimated 7,500+ people into Downtown Mobile to watch over 84 shows in 15 different venues over a 3-day period. Musical artists spanned an array of musical genres (including Americana, indie, country, bluegrass, rock, alternative, metal, soul, funk, jazz, brass band, blues, R&B and hip-hop) and came from throughout the Southeast, with at least 9 different states being represented.
And for the 2018 event, one artist you can see and hear is Paul McDonald. Paul is Nashville’s critically acclaimed singer-songwriter. And he is releasing his first debut solo album, Modern Hearts in June.
Paul McDonald sings those words with soaring emotionality on “So Much Better,” a track from his upcoming debut, Modern Hearts. And those are the words of a man who has truly lived his lyrics. Three years ago, after a highly publicized divorce and the break-up of his former band, Paul left his life in LA in search of familiarity and solace. The Alabama-born artist found himself in East Nashville, feeling like a stranger in a region he once called home. That all changed when he picked up his guitar and began the process of what would become Modern Hearts.
The 14-track body of work represents a full-spectrum of emotions, from soulful and sorrowful tracks, to invigorating new-life anthems, to meditative mid-tempo numbers.
Paul story’s is the triumphant Modern Hearts, an album bursting with anthemic hooks, majestically textured alt-rock, tinges of Southern soul, literate introspection, and profound redemption. Previously, Paul’s broadly resonant musicality garnered him international acclaim and coverage from the likes of Rolling Stone, Billboard, MTV, etc., and enabled him to share the stage with a diverse array of classic and current icons. Select performance highlights include sharing the stage with artists such as Stevie Wonder, John Mayer, Crosby, Stills, & Nash, Zac Brown, Father John Misty, Emmylou Harris, and appearing at festivals such as Bonnaroo, SXSW, and Hangout Festival and performing on nationally televised shows like “Good Morning America” , “NBC’s Parenthood”, and “The Tonight Show.”
Modern Hearts was produced by Jordan Lehning (Caitlin Rose, Rodney Crowell, Andrew Combs), and features an all-star cast of studio musicians whose resumes include Cage The Elephant, James Bay, Shawn Mendes, Maren Morris, Nikki Lane, Kacey Musgraves, and Buddy Miller, among others. The album was tracked with ace musicians playing in real time with sympathetic band interplay at the vibey Echo Mountain Studios in Asheville, NC (Band Of Horses, Avett Brothers). Additional recording took place at Sound Emporium Studios (Jason Isbell, Alabama Shakes) in Nashville, TN.
Paul McDonald will perform at the SouthSounds Music And Arts Festival on Saturday, April 14th at 5 pm on the Lagunitas Stage. Paul on the same day will also do a live performance on Birmingham Mountain Radio the morning of April 14th.
Learn more about Paul McDonald at: https://www.thepaulmcdonald.com/
Learn more about the SouthSounds Music And Arts Festival at: http://southsoundsfest.com/