Josh Ritter

Origin: Moscow, Idaho

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Genres: Alternative Country, Folk, Rock

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Josh Ritter is an American singer, songwriter, musician and author who performs and records with The Royal City Band.  Ritter is known for his distinctive Americana style and narrative lyrics.  In 2006 he was named as one of the “100 Greatest Living Songwriters” by Paste magazine.

Ritter was born and raised in Moscow, Idaho.  As a teen after hearing Johnny Cash and Bob Dylan’s “Girl from the North Country” off Nashville Skyline he attempted to write songs on a lute that his father had built before abandoning the instrument and switching to guitar.  At age 21, Ritter recorded his first album Josh Ritter.

Ritter moved to Scotland after graduating college to attend the School of Scottish Folk Studies for six months.  He moved back to Idaho and then Providence, Rhode Island where he performed at open mic nights where he was spotted by musician Glen Hansard and his band The Frames, who invited him to return with them to Ireland.  As an early sign of his success to come, Ritter found on the trip to Ireland that his album sold particularly well at open mics there.  With the money from merchandise sales, Ritter was eventually able to quit his day job and devote himself to music full-time.

Ritter then recorded and self published his second album the Golden Age of Radio for $1000.  A song from the album “Me & Jiggs” was subsequently released as a single in Ireland, where Ritter was quickly becoming a word-of-mouth success, first opening for The Frames, then headlining his own shows.  Ritter’s third record, Hello Starling produced by former Frames guitarist Dave Odlum debuted at No. 2 on the Irish charts.

Ritter has headlined with artists such as Joan Baez who later released her own version of Ritter’s song “Wings.”  He has appeared as a musical guest on such high-profile television shows as Late Show with David Letterman in America and Later…with Jools Holland  in Britian.

Ritter’s sixth album, So Runs the World Away was released in 2010.  One of the songs, “Change of Time” appeared in the NBC series Parenthood and the trailer for the 2011 Natalie Portman film, The Other Woman.

In support of the album Ritter toured extensively with his newly named The Royal City band.  So Runs the World Away garnered largely positive reviews.

Ritter’s eighth studio album, 2015’s Sermon on the Rocks garnered favorable review and notice through the single “Homecoming” being featured in the Showtime series Billions.

Josh Ritter will release his 10th studio album Fever on April 26, 2019.  Jason Isbell produced the 10-track effort, which was recorded in Nashville and features Ritter backed by Isbell’s band The 400 Unit.

Reference –

Josh Ritter discography

Josh Ritter (1999)

Golden Age of Radio (2000)

Hello Starling (2003)

The Animal Years (2006)

The Historical Conquests of Josh Ritter (2007)

So Runs the World Away (2010)

The Beast in Its Tracks (2013)

Sermon on the Rocks (2015)

Gathering (2017)

Fever Breaks  (2019)

Sacramento’s K-ZAP 93.3 FM plays Josh  Ritter.  All part of 50 years of Rock, Blues and More, 24-7 on our station’s stream at K-ZAP.ORG/LISTEN/

Check out “Old Black Magic” from Josh Ritter’s forthcoming album.