First Listen: Robby Hecht Premieres Video for “New York City” and Announces New Album
A classic singer/songwriter in the vein of James Taylor or Joni Mitchell, Robby Hecht has just previewed an upcoming self-titled album that simply grabbed me right away.
Slated for release on March 25, Robby Hecht is a melancholy combination of lovely acoustic accompaniments and masterful but accessible lyrics. Hecht’s collection of songs fits like your favorite shoes.
Even on first listen these songs feel like they’ve been lurking in the back your brain just waiting for a chance to make themselves known. Sigh. It's good.
Hecht professes to being a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to songwriting. And thank goodness for that. “When I’m writing by myself something can take three years until I get past my own self-editing phase,” says Hecht about his meticulous approach. “Everything I write I’m trying to capture some kind of truth that I haven’t heard anyone say in that way before.”
About his new third album, Hecht shares, “I wrote most of the songs on this album in the time since my last release, and I don't think there's an established theme that ties the songs together. I've been doing a lot of co-writing and trying out some new techniques for inspiration, and I've grown a lot as a songwriter.” Hecht continues, “As a result, I think the range of songs here is wider in scope than on my past two records. This is part of why I wanted to have the album be self-titled.”
Here we have the privilege of sharing Hecht’s first single off of Robby Hecht, titled “New York City.”
Hecht shared some insight with us about this song and video’s backstory, “I have so many friends who've moved to New York City at some point in their lives, and I wrote this song for them. New York City is such a city of contrasts: fear and exultation, community and isolation, bright lights against a starless sky. It’s a place where for generations, people from across the world have gone to challenge themselves and start over under a new set of rules. This video is a collage of some of my favorite images, a variety of people past and present in many different parts of New York finding their way.”
Hecht gave us a peek into his gear locker with a look at the guitars he used to record and perform Robby Hecht “I tour with a Martin OM-18V that I bought new in 2007, and we used that a lot, including on ‘The Sea and The Shore,’ which is essentially a guitar/vocal track. We recorded a good deal of the record at Joe Pisapia's studio in East Nashville, and he had a 1970s Yamaha FG and a 1931 Gibson L-O that I used while tracking. We ended up keeping quite a few of my original vocal/guitar takes, so those guitars made their way onto many of the songs.”
Pegged as a “songwriter’s songwriter,” Hecht has enjoyed accolades from his peers. He won the prestigious Telluride Troubadour Contest, and took a title at Kerrville New Folk Competition, a national nerve-center of contemporary songwriting. These and other contests were, Hecht says, “an entry point to the world of performing. They put me in front of people on a bigger stage than I had been able to book by myself. And they made me feel like I could perform in front of a lot of people and it would be okay.”
Stay tuned for more from Robby Hecht and keep up at robbyhecht.com