Country singer Josh Goodlett says he likes artists who are the “real deal” – artists who believe in themselves, perform music that is sincere and heartfelt, and who connect with the fans. While he seems quite unaware of it, Josh is describing himself.
Goodlett is a natural singer who grew up in a musical family, and he’s been “singing since before he could talk.” While ability is key to succeeding in the music business, willingness to work hard is another essential element. Josh was born willing – a native of Northern Kentucky and Southern Indiana farm country – he grew up rising before dawn for chores, and singing in the church choir on Sunday mornings.
“I fed calves before school, helped my grandpa and uncles in the tobacco fields, and worked for one of my uncles on a dairy farm,” he says of his boyhood in Taylorsville, Kentucky, not far from Louisville. “I’m no stranger to what country folks have to do in terms of getting up in the morning and working hard.”
During his rural upbringing, Josh never considered music to be anything more than a part of everyday life. However, the response he received after singing “Amazing Grace” as a teenager at his grandfather’s funeral changed that notion. He learned that he could move people with his voice, and became interested in making a go of it as a performer. It would be years before he would strap on a guitar and start writing Country songs, but when he did, it came to him just as easily as singing did.
Josh now co-writes much of his insightful original material with Nashville hitmaker Bobby E. Boyd (Alabama, Rascal Flatts). “I met Bobby a couple years ago when I came down to Nashville to record a demo,” Josh recalls. “He asked me why I was doing this, and I told him I wanted to touch people with my music. When I told him that, he said that he’d help me in any way he could, and we’ve been friends ever since.”
Goodlett brings a variety of influences to the table during their writing sessions and readily admits that Kenny Chesney is the biggest one. Josh draws inspiration not only from the Country arena, but also from artists of other genres, including Elvis, AC/DC, and Bob Marley. “I like Marley because he stood up for what he believed in, and it came through in his music. But I like everyone from Otis Redding to Hank Williams, Conway Twitty and Hank Jr., and I’m a huge fan of Gary Allan. If it’s good, it’s good, it doesn’t matter what style it is. Those singers all make a statement with their music, and I want to get mine across the same way.”
Josh’s efforts are paying off: fans and radio alike embraced his debut radio single, “Why You Gotta Be That Way.” His self-penned European-only release, “Leaving Indiana,” enjoyed eight weeks in the Top 10 on the international HotDisc chart. His newest single, “I Don’t Usually Do This” (written by Bobby E. Boyd, Brad Wolf, Phillip Moore), is Josh’s best outing yet. The compelling story of a man who has let his guard down and let his heart find a home is a universally understood theme. “That is who I was before I met my fiancée Sara,” Goodlett recalls. “I think this song will appeal to women who have had ‘this man’ in their life and also to the men who ‘don’t usually do this’.”
It’s a great song choice for Josh, whose easy tenor echoes with hints of Tim McGraw, Eric Church, George Strait and Blake Shelton – and it’s sure to take him a long way on the path to stardom. “I plan to be a headlining act – that’s what I’m after,” he says in a drawl that is as much Southern Hoosier as Appalachian. “The Lord willing, that’s what I’ll get.” When that success comes, a life on the road is sure to follow. That’s a lifestyle that Goodlett is ready to embrace.
“Last year, during the radio tour for my single, we spent five weeks on the road and drove 16,000 miles. I loved it. We also played shows in Kentucky, Indiana and Tennessee,” Josh says. What the ever-modest Goodlett doesn’t mention, though, is that these shows were opening slots for Michael Ray and Big Smo. Additionally, Goodlett shared the stage with Andy Griggs, Jeff Bates, Bryan White, Danielle Peck and Marty Brown for a series of acoustic shows. Previously, he opened for Tyler Farr, Kip Moore, Will Hoge, Clayton Anderson, Drake White and Shooter Jennings.
The live shows and fan feedback have helped make Josh confident in his abilities and his future success. He knows who he is as a person, a Country singer and as a man. “I’m pretty personable. I’m ‘what you see is what you get.’ I’m down to earth. I love God, my family and this country, and that’s basically who I am. That’s what I stand for, and I think there are still quite a few people out there who believe in the same things. I’ll be singing for them.”
A father of five, Josh vigorously supports charitable organizations that help children. These include Aiden’s Legacy, which supports pediatric cancer research at Kosair Children’s Hospital in Louisville, and Riley’s G.R.A.C.E., a foundation that supports families dealing with a child’s health crisis. Goodlett, surrounded by family members who have served in the Armed Forces, also supports the Wounded Warrior Project.
His new radio single (released yesterday)
SONG TITLE – “I Don’t Usually Do This”
ARTIST – – Josh Goodlett
WRITERS – Bobby E. Boyd, Brad Wolf, Phillip Moore
PUBLISHERS- Porpoiseful Publishing, BMI/ Green Dog Music, BMI
LABEL : Good Entertainment
Photo Credit: Chuck Arlund