Rayland Baxter (from the album Wide Awake )
The creative process is a solitary venture. Artists coexist in the world, and the creators often need to make their art in the middle of life passing by. Rayland Baxter make good use of the gift opportunity presented him, moving from his Nashville home to Franklin, Kentucky, setting up a space for his songwriting and his muse in an abandoned rubber band factory. The joy an artist has with nothing in front of them but the time to create was what Rayland Baxter experienced. His music flourished and he recalled that ‘I packed everything in my van and moved to Franklin for three months. It was the fist time I ever got to be alone and focus solely on songs like that. All I did was write, write, write all day every day. I was obsessed.’ Emerging with a notebook full of songs, Rayland Baxter gathered tracks for his recent release, Wide Awake.
Produced by Butch Walker, Wide Awake is a blending of songwriter and producer. Tender ballads receive breathing room with echoed harmonies and pedal steel swells on “Let It All Go, Man” as an edgy rumble courses underneath “Amelia Baker”, revolving rhythms sprinkle kaleidoscopic psychedelia throughout “Strange American Dream”, and a bright bounce causes sand to scatter in the dreamy melodies of “Santa Monica”. As a theme, Rayland Baxter feels the songs collected for Wide Awake are ‘about decision making. It’s about being a human at the crossroads. Do I do good or do I do evil? Do I lie or do I tell the truth? Am I going to be happy or am I going to be sad? All of these questions and emotions are things I see in myself, and they’re the same things I see in everyone else no matter where I go’. Wide Awake wiggles on a thick bass line in the role of “Casanova” and promises its heart on “Everything to Me’ while Rayland Baxter relates an American tale in “79 Shiny Revolvers” and sadly waves goodbye in “Without Me”.
Listen and buy the music of Rayland Baxter from AMAZON or iTunes