Nicholas Burke of Oakland makes music that he calls “psychedelic country” and says his turn to country music was inspired by his time touring across the country as drummer for Bay Area bands Ride the Blinds and Strangefeather. “My music comes from two distinct places that are constantly dancing around each other. On one side, I am an eternal optimist and observe the everyday truth that life is a gift,” Burke tells me. “The two roads run parallel and perpendicular at different times, and I chronicle everything in short bursts of recording.”
Burke has released three solo albums, and plans to release a more traditional country album in September. Listening to Burke’s albums, you can truly hear his optimism shine through, which is a nice break from the norm. The jangly guitars and flowing harmonies show that Burke is heavily influenced by California folk-rock pioneers such as The Byrds and Gram Parsons, while his booming voice is continually soaked in reverb to give it a slightly modern twist.
Below, you can listen to a pair tracks from Burke – “Freedom Ride” off 2011’s Golden Days Yet to Come and “Learn to Love Again” from Right Now All the Time, released earlier this year. All of Burke’s solo work is available for download on his Bandcamp page. Burke will perform at the historic 23 Club in Brisbane on Saturday, August 25th.
Nicholas Burke, JL Stiles, Chris Jones
August 25, 2012