James Gabriel Keogh is a ukulele-wielding Australian singer-songwriter better known by his moniker, Vance Joy
. Keogh didn't always have his sights on being a musician, at one point he was set to be an Australian football player (not soccer, it's similar to our football.) He got his start in music by playing covers on his guitar and making up his own lyrics. Eventually, that evolved into him composing songs of his own. He released his debut EP, God Loves You When You're Dancing
, in 2013. Following the EP he landed a deal with Atlantic Records and released his debut LP, Dream Your Life Away
. The album (and his EP) featured his hit single "Riptide," which launched Vance Joy to worldwide stardom. He went on to open for Taylor Swift
on her 1989 World Tour
Last month, Vance Joy released his first new music since Dream Your Life Away
, a single called "Lay It On Me." The song is yet another folk-pop masterpiece. Vance Joy is an expert at making stories out of his tracks, and this is no exception. The scene is set with the clear acoustic guitar, and the opening lines "I'm so gone / Anyone can see that I'm wasted / You cut through / And I just wanna know what's in your head." From there, the song moves through a story of newly budding love. As the love grows stronger, so does the song, with drums, piano, and a tambourine being layered on like relationship milestones. It builds to a strong chorus, with strings accompanying Keogh as he asks his partner to asks his partner to really let him in and "Lay it all on me now."
Vance Joy is a truly unique and rare talent. He manages to fit a whole novel into a three minute thirty-five second song. Instrumentally, his songs are simple without ever being boring. And his voice is raw and unperfected, but always saturated with emotion.
Vance Joy will be embarking on the US portion of his Lay It All On Me Tour
September through October. Find dates below.
Also check out our session with Vance Joy: