DUE SEPTEMBER 23
RHETT JAMES MCLAUGHLIN–internet personality and co-host/creator of the popular daily YouTube show “Good Mythical Morning”–recently revealed his latest endeavor: a solo alt-country project entitled JAMES AND THE SHAME, which will self-release its debut full-length album HUMAN OVERBOARD digitally on September 23. JAMES AND THE SHAME was formed out of RHETT’s love for country music which he developed having been born in Macon, GA and raised in North Carolina. The album is a departure from his previous comedic releases as one-half of the musical/comedy duo Rhett & Link and showcases a deeply personal musical exploration of RHETT’s evolving worldview.
JAMES AND THE SHAME have shared an intimate and touching music video for the album’s ballad “Where We’re Going” in advance of the track’s digital release across streaming platforms tomorrow, August 19. “Where We’re Going” was originally written as a Valentine’s Day gift for his wife Jessie McLaughlin before he asked her to guest on the track and added it to the upcoming album. PopMatters yesterday (August 17) hosted a premiere of the video, which they described as “a hearty, romantic performance reminiscent of Americana this side of Drew & Ellie Holcomb” while stating “elements brought into production like melodic pedal steel and steady percussion set the song into a contemporary country-like soundscape.” Watch the video, directed and edited by Ben Eck, streaming below or HERE. Pre-save “Where We’re Going” here: https://distrokid.com/hyperfollow/jamesandtheshame/where-were-going.
“I originally wrote this song as a Valentine’s gift to my wife Jessie and I get emotional every time I sing it,” recalls RHETT. “She didn’t know I’d be asking her to be a part of the track, but she was more than happy to jump on it. It helps that she’s a natural (and her degree is in music, specifically voice), so I knew she’d knock it out of the park. I can report that we didn’t get into any fights while working on it. So, the romance is still intact.”
Elaborating on how the video came together, RHETT shares: “Ben has been working at my company, Mythical Entertainment, for almost a decade. We weren’t planning on working together on any aspect of the James and the Shame project since Mythical keeps him busy, but then he approached me to let me know how excited he was about the record and wanted to help. He’s always been an amazing collaborator with an incredible eye and ability to follow through on a vision. I wasn’t about to stand in the way of that. We knew we wanted to embrace the sincerity of the song, and I think the visuals do just that.”
AMES AND THE SHAME revealed the first taste of HUMAN OVERBOARD with the track “Believe Me” on July 18 which delved into RHETT’s spiritual deconstruction and the reaction he received after making the announcement publicly. For Folk’s Sake (8/7) wrote about the song stating, “McLaughlin’s pleading croon rings in the likes of Alan Jackson and Darrell Scott, but instrumentally veers into territory reserved by Lord Huron and Okkervil River. It’s an eclectic mix of vintage country and folk-rock.” The single was accompanied with a lyric video featuring a stripped-down acoustic performance which has garnered over 570k views. Watch the “Believe Me” lyric video HERE.
“The album is best enjoyed as a whole as if I’m bringing the listener along as I process my spiritual evolution,” explains RHETT. “It’s sort of a primer—setting a thesis for the entire project—that being: regardless of where you’re at or the assumptions you bring to the broader conversation around spiritual deconstruction, this is my story. You don’t have to agree with me, and I’m not even asking you to. But please trust me that this is actually how I processed all this.”
HUMAN OVERBOARD Track Listing:
1. Believe Me
2. Flash of Rationality
3. Give A Damn
5. Where We’re Going
6. Creek and Back
7. Only Thing
8. Kill A Man
9. In Vain
11. Old Letters