On May 10, John Shakespear will release his full-length debut album, Spend Your Youth. The Nashville-via-Boston based singer-songwriter recorded the album, which follows his 2016 EP Little Light, at New England’s BearTone Studio alongside producer Devon Dawson, known for his work with artists like Local Natives.
Ahead of Spend Your Youth‘s release, Shakespear has shared the album’s title track, premiering below. Lyrically, the track refracts outsized visions of coming of age the through the unreliable lenses of train-hopping free-wheeling and the mundanities of the American Dream. Sonically, Shakespear creates a feeling of wistful nostalgia with deftly picked acoustic guitar and delicate vocal harmonies reminiscent of Fleet Foxes and Elliott Smith.
“Our culture is full of coming of age myths, of blueprints for the passage from adolescence to adulthood,” Shakespear says. “There’s the wild, Kerouacian idea of growing up on the open road, there’s the dream of losing yourself in a lasting love — and then, of course, there’s the good old American dream, with its picket fences and stable children and all the trouble and boredom that can bring. None of these stories are wholly true or false, but they mold us and form pieces of the people we become. I think of this song, and the record that shares its name, as a litany of those myths, and a reminder to focus on the present moment before it slips us by.”
“Spend Your Youth” is the second track to be released from the LP, following “Swing For The Fences.” Shakespear will embark on a short tour in support of Spend Your Youth, beginning on May 2 in Nashville.
Listen to “Spend Your Youth” and see a full list of upcoming tour dates below.
John Shakespear tour dates:
5/2 – Nashville, TN – The East Room
5/8 – Washington, DC – Electric Maid
5/9 – Harrisburg, PA – Little Amps
5/10 – NYC – Pete’s Candy Store
5/11 – Baltimore, MD – The Four-Hour Day Lutherie
5/22 – Boston, MA – Sofar Sounds
6/6 – Boston, MA – The Burren Backroom