Singer-songwriter Brent Cobb, whose rootsy Southern tunes, including “Old Shit,” cut by Miranda Lambert, vividly capture feelings of nostalgia sometimes mixed with a strong shot of melancholy, steps back in time for a touching acoustic performance of “Shine on Rainy Day,” the title track from his album released last fall.
Recorded as the “Elektra Sessions Live” at the historic Sam Phillips Recording Service studios in Memphis, the tune attempts to put an optimistic spin on a situation that would appear hopeless. With shades of the Seventies-era folk-country of Leon Russell and Danny O’Keefe, Cobb recounts a barroom conversation with a friend who suggests to him that his songs are anything but happy. “Laughin’ ain’t a pleasure ’til you know about cryin’,” he sings in his sweet Georgia drawl.
The musician is related to acclaimed producer Dave Cobb (Jason Isbell, Chris Stapleton), who was at the helm of his cousin’s LP as producer. “He’s like a redneck Paul Simon,” says Cobb, a reference that rings true here: there are faint echoes of Rhymin’ Simon’s 1975 gem “Still Crazy After All These Years” in the gentle melody of “Shine on Rainy Day.”
Because the organically grown LP straddles the line between mainstream country and Americana, Cobb has been able to rely on great word-of-mouth from fans of both genres, as opposed to counting on radio airplay.
“It’s nice to know that they don’t have to be the end-all, be-all, for the first time in a long time,” he tells Rolling Stone Country. “And we all knew that was coming. When I was a kid thinking of being a touring musician, I thought of it happening the way it is happening now.”
Cobb is currently on tour in the U.K., appearing in London Thursday night, then Manchester on Friday, January 27th, followed by a show in Glasgow, Scotland, on January 29th. He returns to the States to play a show with the Cadillac Three in Detroit on February 3rd with more dates to follow.