John Fullbright’s ‘Social Skills’ blurs the lines between humorous lyrics and serious self-reflection

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While straightforward songwriting certainly has its place in all the latest genres of music, it’s the sly, or clever, or “is it a joke or not?” kind of tracks that can really leave a lasting mark on discerning listeners. Jean FullbrightThe new single from , “Social Skills”, is a striking example of the GRAMMY-nominated musician’s deviously masterful songwriting; combining deeply funny lyrics with a distressed delivery that leaves listeners confused as to whether they’re supposed to be laughing or not. “Social Skills” rides a hard-hitting, straightforward rock groove as Fullbright connects line after line what it’s like to lean on one vice or another – or all of them – to deal with a lack, you’ve got it. guessed, social skills. The song’s catchy chorus is uttered repeatedly with a lilting tinge, but it’s a devastatingly honest confession from its author: “So I drink this gin and take these pills, just because I don’t have no social skills.”

The general public hasn’t heard much from Fullbright since his critically acclaimed album Songs; an eight-year chasm that seemed unthinkable for someone with so much hype – including a GRAMMY nod, an emerging artist nomination from the Americana Music Association, and awards from ASCAP and Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame – surrounding his early career. “It’s been a process of learning to be part of a community of musicians and to focus less on the lonely, depressed songwriter… just playing something that has a beat and is really fun,” Fullbright says. . On Sept. 30, Fullbright is set to end the dry spell with the release of his new album, The Liar, opening up his newfound confidence in musical collaboration for the world to hear. “That’s not to say there aren’t songs on this record where I deviate from that because there are, but there’s also a band with an opinion. And that part is new for me.

Fans can hear “Social Skills” now at this link, check out previously released singles “Paranoid Heart” here and “Poster Child” here, and pre-order or pre-record The Liar ahead of its release here. A full list of Fullbright tour dates can be found below or at johnfullbrightmusic.com/tour.

More about The Liar: The Liar was recorded on the farm grounds at Steve and Charlene Ripley’s studio in northeast Oklahoma. After Steve’s death, Charlene flirted with the idea of ​​selling ownership of the studio, so Fullbright quickly stepped up to ensure he could record there before it changed hands. He assembled a group of, as Fulbright calls them, “the usual suspects.” Anyone familiar with Oklahoma music will recognize the list, which includes Jesse Aycock, Aaron Boehler, Paul Wilkes, Stephen Lee and Paddy Ryan, all of whom are in more bands than meets the eye. With a few more friends stopping by to record takes, they finished the songs and tracked the album with engineer Jason Weinheimer in a whirlwind four days.

“It was so collaborative with really cool voices,” Fullbright said, expressing surprise at how easy the process was. “It’s like playing music in Tulsa. Everyone does what they do and it works. »

The take-home momentum landed Fullbright in the studio with some old songs (“Unlocked Doors” also appeared on Live at the Blue Door in 2009), some new and some unfinished, making his newfound confidence in the musical collaboration essential. to arrangements. and thought fully about the final album. The Liar, therefore, uses emotional and instrumental dynamics in ways Fullbright had not previously allowed himself to fully explore. There’s a noticeable slack here, an indulgent instrumental break there, and the general sense that the tight-lipped John Fullbright who agonized over the songwriting process and then shied away from talking about the meanings behind his songs in the past has attenuated.

“What rules didn’t I have? Fullbright talks about his former songwriter. “Even like, how many syllables were in a line, I had arbitrary rules for. A lot of that is gone, and I’m so much happier. It’s really just the idea that you don’t have to do it yourself. It’s so much more fun to collaborate.

The liar’s track list:

Barden, 1645

paranoid heart

Stars

The liar

Doors unlocked

where we belong

Social abilities

Fortunate

Impeccable

Child poster

Safe to say

Gasoline

Catch John Fullbright on tour:

September 17 – Nashville, Tennessee – AMERICANAFEST 2022

September 23 – Santa Monica, CA – McCabe’s Guitar Shop

September 25 – Glen Ellen, CA – Jack London State Park

September 30 – Oklahoma City, OK – Blue Door (sold out)

October 1 – Oklahoma City, OK – Blue Door (sold out)

October 2 – Tulsa, Oklahoma – Fassler Hall

October 7 – Dallas, TX – The Kessler Theater

October 8 – Austin, TX – C-Boys Heart & Soul

October 9 – The Woodlands, TX – Dosey Doe

October 13 – Kansas, OK – Bushyhead Farm Fall Festival

Oct. 23 – Pittsburgh, KS – Mountain Stage

October 26 – Fayetteville, AR – George’s Stately Salon

October 27 – Little Rock, AR – Stickyz Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicken Shack

October 28 – Memphis, TN – B-side

October 29 – Nashville, TN – The Bluebird Cafe

October 30 – Decatur, GA – Eddie’s Attic

November 17 – New York, NY – Rockwood Music Hall

November 20 – Fall River, MA – Narrows Center for the Arts

December 1 – Dallas, TX – Poor David’s Pub

December 2 – Austin, TX – The Saxon Pub

December 3 – La Grange, TX – The Bugle Boy

December 4 – Houston, TX – McGonigel’s Mucky Duck

December 5 – San Antonio, TX – Sam’s Burger Joint

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