One of my favorite artists is Houston native Josh Ward and I have been following him for quite a few years now. He’s a testament to staying to true to his sound and not compromising to the pressures to put out mainstream sounding music.
I love putting his albums on shuffle and listening to all the songs while I’m in the gym or out driving. I first got into his album “Promises” shortly after it came out in 2012 and was hooked right away.
One of the biggest takeaways I have had with Ward’s music is the unmistakable honesty he sings with. This is another reason why Jesse Raub Jr. and Cody Johnson appeal to me so much. Sometimes when you hear an artists like this you can tell it’s sincere. That is exactly the case with Josh Ward.
With an impressive list of number one songs in Texas, his success has not been by accident. Off his 2015 album, “Holding Me Together,” the hurtin’ song “Broken Heart” displays the pain so well in his voice. The somber fiddle in the background helps set the tone and you’ll find yourself feeling the heartbreak all while your tapping your boot to this song.
One thing that has always drawn me to Josh Ward is his upbeat honky tonk songs like “Last Night’s Makeup” and “Highway.” These are the songs that will have a crowd go wild and sing right along. This IS what upbeat country songs should sound like. Back when I got sucked into bro -country years back, it was largely due because I had no access at the time to music like this. Mainstream country had become stale and I did not have any knowledge or even ability to find this music at the time. Once I heard songs like Ward’s, I soon realized it was what I had been searching for the whole time. Ever since, I’ve been in love with Texas country and an avid supporter from afar.
If you want to feel even more pain, give a listen to the Texas Regional Music Award song of the year, “Whiskey and Whitley.” This is a perfect example of a song that the country greats like Alan Jackson or George Strait would cut. When you listen to this song, you will understand why Ward continues to pack the venues. A song like this not just anyone can sing and make you feel the sorrow of a break-up. It’s a song that will forever be attached to his name and will stand the test of time.
I’ll leave you with one of my favorite songs in all of country music: “Somewhere in the Middle (Between Right & Wrong.)” I have cranked this song dozens of times and it just never gets old for me. While some get revved up listening to “Cruise” by FGL, I’ll raised you this song. It’s an absolute blast to listen to and I can only imagine how good it is live. My hat is off to Josh Ward and I expect him to eventually crash the mainstream much like Aaron Watson has begun to. There’s just no way a talent like this can’t be heard and I think you’ll love his music.
Just a Massachusetts guy supporting Texas and other independent country/Americana artists.
Check out my spotify for good tunes!