A Long List of Lies
By Eileen Tilson
After one listen to North Dakota’s Josh Harty’s A Long List of Lies, it would not be a huge shocker if you confused it with a Sun Records production. Harty’s music has that steady-as-a-train beat that would be on any of Carl Perkin’s playlists. With an honest voice and fingers that seem to catch fire as he picks his guitar, Harty has put together a collection of music that you could easily find on any honky tonk jukebox.
As the third generation of musicians in his family, Harty grew up singing gospel and country, and by the age of 12 he had made two albums with his dad, the second selling an astonishing 10,000 copies. It is no surprise that A Long List of Lies debuted at #8 on the European Americana charts. This is honest music, that is not trying to break boundaries, but remains loyal to those who are looking for a good slow dance in their favorite highway bar.
This is Harty’s second album, a gap from his debut album, Three Days Notice, released six years ago. It seems Harty must have learned a life lesson or two – his music has an intimacy that only a man who has felt some pain could produce. The songs are universal. “Country Song” tells the story of someone feeling down, “You & I” is about a break up, and “Which Way I Go” is about a man who is trying everything he can to save his relationship. The real genius behind this music though is not in the lyrics, it is in the way the music makes you feel. A Long List of Lies is the background music to the simple life, and Harty’s guitar picking is easily appropriate for any cross country train ride. Josh Harty has proven that you don’t need to live in Tennessee or Texas to make true Americana music.