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Josh Ritter

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Josh Ritter is an American singer-songwriter and musician who has been active since 1999. He is known for his literate, poetic lyrics and historic melodies. His music encompasses a wide range of genres, including folk, bluegrass, country, rock, and pop. Ritter’s primary musical influences are Johnny Cash and Bob Dylan.

Biography

Early Life

Josh Ritter was born on October 21, 1976, in Moscow, Idaho. He grew up in a household full of music and books. His parents were both neuroscientists. Josh Ritter began playing guitar when he was 14 years old and wrote his first song shortly thereafter. He later attended Oberlin College in Ohio where he studied neuroscience program. It was during his time at Oberlin that Ritter realized he wanted to pursue a career in music. After college, Ritter moved to Scotland to attend the School of Scottish Studies. He then moved to Providence, Rhode Island where he worked as a janitor and played open mics.

Personal Life

Ritter married his longtime girlfriend, singer-songwriter Dawn Landes, in 2009. In a February 2011 interview with the magazine, Ritter revealed that he and Landes had recently separated. His current wife is writer Haley Tanner, with whom he has a daughter Beatrix Wendylove Ritter.

Career

Ritter’s first album, Josh Ritter, was self-released in 1999. The album was recorded live to analog tape over the course of one week at a studio in rural western Massachusetts. Ritter’s second album, The Golden Age of Radio, was self-released in 2002. The album was recorded in Nashville, Tennessee. The album was later re-released by Signature Sounds, with whom Ritter would continue to work.

Ritter’s third album, Hello Starling, was released by Signature Sounds in 2003. The album was recorded in Nashville and produced by Paul Kolderie. Ritter’s fourth album, The Animal Years, was released by V2 Records in 2006. The album was producer Brian Deck. Ritter’s fourth album, The Animal Years, was released by V2 Records in 2006. The album was producer Brian Deck. The album was inspired by the life and work of American writer Mark Twain. Ritter’s fifth album, The Historical Conquests of Josh Ritter, was released in 2007. The album was produced by Sam Kassirer & mixed by Jacquire King. The album was inspired by Ritter’s love of history, and the songs are about great moments and figures in history.

Ritter’s sixth album, So Runs the World Away, was released by Pytheas Recordings on April 17, 2010. The album was produced by Sam Kassirer. Ritter obtained the moniker from a line in Hamlet’s third act. Ritter’s seventh album, The Beast in its Tracks, was released on March 5, 2013. The album was produced by Sam Kassirer and recorded in Nashville. It is a concept album about the end of Ritter’s marriage. Ritter has said that, although the songs are about his personal life, he hopes they will be relatable to others who have gone through similar experiences. Ritter’s album The Beast in its Tracks debuted at number 22 on the Billboard 200 and number 8 on the Top Rock Albums chart.

Ritter’s eighth album, Sermon on the Rocks, was released on October 16, 2015. The album was produced by Jason Isbell and recorded in Nashville. Ritter has said that the album is about faith and doubt and that it is his “most personal” album to date. Ritter’s album Sermon on the Rocks debuted at number 19 on the Billboard 200 and number 7 on the Top Rock Albums chart. Ritter’s ninth album, Gathering, was released on September 22, 2017, on Pytheas Recordings. The album was produced by Royal City Band. Ritter’s tenth album, Fever Breaks, was released on April 26, 2019, by Pytheas Recordings. The album was produced by Jason Isbell. Fever Breaks debuted at number 89 on the Billboard 200.

Discography

  • Josh Ritter (1999)
  • Golden Age of Radio (2002)
  • Hello Starling (2003)
  • The Animal Years (2006)
  • The Historical Conquests of Josh Ritter (2007)
  • So Runs the World Away (2010)
  • The Beast in Its Tracks (2013)
  • Sermon on the Rocks (2015)
  • Gathering (2017)
  • Fever Breaks (2019)