June 26, 2012

"Young Master of Unbridled Americana" John Fullbright Receives ASCAP Foundation Lyric Award

By Erik Philbrook with Laura Thomas

[Playlist: 1) John Fullbright performs his ASCAP Foundation Award-winning song "Moving" 2) "Gawd Above" and 3) talks about his Oklahoma roots and musical sensibility.]

Okemah, Oklahoma son John Fullbright may be young, but he is already charming discerning ears in the music industry and winning over many new fans, including some music legends. Master songwriter Jimmy Webb has hailed him as an up-and-coming artist, claiming that "in a very short time John Fullbright will be a household name in American music." Though his debut album From The Ground Up has only been out since May 8th, the release has already garnered its first award for the singer-songwriter. Recently, the ASCAP Foundation announced Fullbright's song "Moving" as the recipient of the 2012 ASCAP Foundation Harold Adamson Lyric Award. Every year, The ASCAP Foundation honors a musical theater, pop, and/or country song with intelligent and sensitive lyrics. ASCAP writer Adamson (1906-1980) was the lyricist behind many standards, including "Time of My Hands" and "Around the World in 80 Days," and his family established this award at The ASCAP Foundation to honor his legacy. The 24-year-old songwriter Fullbright will be formally honored for the award-winning song at a gala event in New York on December 12th.

John Fullbright Group

Pictured (l-r) are ASCAP Foundation Director Colleen McDonough, John Fullbright and ASCAP’s Jim Steinblatt at ASCAP’s New York headquarters.

Three years have seen Fullbright's swift success, from his start in music playing as a festival campground favorite before finishing high school to releasing a live album recorded at Blue Door Records in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. From there, Fullbright stepped into the spotlight with From The Ground Up. Perhaps his almost instant acclaim with the recent release can be attributed to his brilliantly honest songwriting capabilities. His style is reminiscent of Jimmy Webb and Randy Newman, and Fullbright's songwriting heroes include Townes Van Zandt and Mickey Newbury, but the singer-songwriter's sound and lyrical sensibility are distinctly his own. Fullbright's sense of place has strongly influenced his lyric writing, and he credits his Oklahoma home and memories as inspiration for writing the words that flesh out his sensitive and brooding blend of folk, country and blues. He co-produced From The Ground Up, and also played many of the instruments on the record. The full spectrum of talent culminates in his song "Moving", that creates "an unfolding sense of freedom [that] brings the listener to a rocking, ecstatic state".

Already dubbed an “young master of unbridled Americana” by the Boston Globe, Fullbright has begun a tour with folk rock singer-songwriter Aoife O'Donovan. The tour is currently headed for upcoming stops in Fullbright's home state of Oklahoma, Texas, and other dates from the Midwest to the East Coast including shows in St. Louis and Atlanta.

For tour dates, visit: www.johnfullbrightmusic.com/