Leon Bridges has a voice that feels like it’s been beamed in from another time. And while, upon his debut, many were jumping to compare him to Sam Cooke, it’s Arthur Alexander, a country-soul artist of the 60s, who Bridges has always identified with. “His delivery was very subtle — and that’s actually what I’ve always been about,” Bridges told Esquire. “I struggled with wanting to make it clear that [being a soul artist] doesn’t mean I have to be screaming on stage like a preacher… I just want to let the music be music.”
And his music certainly speaks for itself. Although he’s moving more and more away from his religious roots, his voice still has the soul that made him famous. In this track, Beyond, he reimagines a phone conversation with a mother — with exquisite tone and phrasing ringing through every word.
I wanna bring her ’round to meet ya
I think you’d like her kind demeanor
I know that Grandma would’ve loved her, like she was her own
She makes me feel home, oh
Do you think I’m being foolish if I don’t rush in?
To experience the song in full, you can see the whole video here:
It takes a powerful songwriter to take something like a phone conversation with a mother and turn it into a soulful, catchy song like this. Leon Bridges continues to make a name for himself — and the world is listening.