Featuring takes on Sinéad O’Connor, Cher, Regina Spektor and more, the new album from Joshua Ray Walker What Is It Even? is out now Via Soundly Music.
After releasing his first three albums, a trilogy of sorts that No Depression calls “the country music equivalent of the great American novel,” Walker decided it was time to just have some fun. The result is What Is It Even?.
“I realized how influential female pop records and artists have been on me as a person,” explains Walker. “Even more than in a creative sense.”
The catalyst of What Is It Even? was sparked on the patio of the Tulsa, Oklahoma music venue and dive bar Mercury Lounge, a fitting origin story for any country record. It was on that Tulsa patio, deep into tour, when Walker and drummer Trey Pendergrass were half joking about what their gospel jump blues version of Whitney Houston’s “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” would sound like, wondering “what if the Blues Brothers covered a Whitney Houston song?”
The country music canon is littered with standout covers and cover albums, but a vast majority of those come from within country music’s rich history. Walker offers a fresh twist by pulling mostly from outside of country music and by being unafraid to be a man singing songs originally crafted by and for women.
Walker will begin his month-long, first-ever headline tour of Europe and the UK on August 11th in Norway. UK tour dates below as he starts off with The Long Road festival.
What Is It Even? track list
“Cuz I Love You” (Lizzo)
“Linger” feat Kyle Gass of Tenacious D (The Cranberries)
“I Wanna Dance With Somebody” (Whitney Houston)
“Cheap Thrills” (Sia)
“Blue” (LeAnn Rimes)
“Goodbye Horses” (Q Lazarus)
“Nothing Compares 2 U” (Sinead O’Connor)
“Joshua” (Dolly Parton)
“Samson” (Regina Spektor)
Joshua Ray Walker – 2023 UK Tour Dates
August 27 – Lutterworth, UK – The Long Road
September 2 – London, UK – Oslo Hackney
September 3 – Newcastle, UK – The Cluny 2
September 4 – Glasgow, UK – The Hug and Pint
September 5 – Manchester, UK – The Deaf Institute
September 6 – Brighton, UK – The Prince Albert
For tickets and more info, visit http://joshuaraywalker.com