Australian singer-songwriter Harmony Byrne may have been born an ocean away from America, but she sure knows how to write a song that feels like a classic American ballad.
This is exemplified on Byrne’s newest single: an introspective tune by the name of “Good Idea.”
Now, what does it actually mean for a song to feel like a classic American ballad? For starters, it’s subjective — so it really varies depending on who you ask — but to me, it certainly doesn’t mean evoking images of bald eagles and American flags. No, a song that truly feels like a classic American ballad is a song that transports you to that “special place.” That dusty, nostalgic and magical place that makes you feel equal parts melancholy and comforted.
And that is the place that “Good Idea” sends you to.
Layered with acoustic guitars and a dreamy pedal-steel, Byrne takes you on a six-minute journey that sonically lands right between Faye Webster and Neil Young. Lyrically, the tune attempts to tackle some relatable truths of the human experience — and, in an intimate and tactful way, it succeeds in doing so.
“I was living in Norway reflecting on my life and the lives of those back home,” Byrne told American Songwriter. “This song is not about the joy of living, it’s about the tragedies. It’s about how unkind we are, how lonely we are, how unfair governments are and how fearful we are. It’s about social pressure, depression, addiction and death. It’s about the choices we make that can have an indelible impact on ourselves and others.”
The single comes ahead of Byrne’s debut album, Heavy Doors, which is due to arrive this spring.
Listen to Harmony Byrne’s newest single, “Good Idea” below: