The Voice in the US usually features a Blake Shelton-coached country artist and 2015’s series was the showcase for Georgia native Zach Seabaugh.
He didn’t win. He finished in the top 6 but the experience and exposure has led to the release of his first 5-track EP. He has a depth to his voice that suggests maturity but he is actually 17 years of age. The inevitability of this is the appeal to the younger and presumably female country fans. A quick check on his Facebook and Twitter pages endorses this and his legion of fans have not been slow embracing the music.
It was released without prior hype or any notice but it has already hit the top 5 on the iTunes country albums chart and the top 10 in the all-genre album chart. It also charted in the Billboard top 30 country albums.
He states that he developed a taste for country music at a very young age listening to Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley and George Strait on his grandfather’s Wurlitzer and this may be evident a little later in the career development. For now, he appears to be settling on a pop-country feel to his music that will fit in with the market that he is tapping into.
He co-wrote four out of the five tracks featured here. The exception is the opener ‘Nothing Good Happens After Midnight’ which was written by Bruce Burch and Wally Montgomery. This is the song that is being pushed to country radio.
It is a up-tempo track that didn’t hit the spot instantly but definitely works its way into the musical taste buds after a few listens. Zach describes it as an “anthem to teenagers wanting to stay up after midnight and have some fun”
‘Take You Home To Mama’ is an old school Rock and Roll mover that tells the tale of a wild and free spirited girlfriend who may not be suitable for family introductions. Stand by for the Elvis moves when this one is performed live.
The third track ‘Sweet Wine and Power Lines’ is hands down the best on offer here. It’s a sweet ballad that taps into the same musical groove that is perfected by the likes of Dan + Shay.
The remaining two tracks on the EP are the upbeat ‘Beginners Love’ that probably won’t stay too long in the memory but will definitely work just fine on his live shows and ‘Saturdays’ which is the second ballad and shows his “soft side”.
The EP is a solid debut for someone who has his whole musical career in front of him. Nobody peaks at 17 and it would be churlish to expect more. As an introduction to Zach Seabaugh, particularly for an audience here that hasn’t seen his performances on The Voice, it ticks all the boxes.
We will certainly look forward to hearing the full album in due course.