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  • Writer's pictureThe Sound Cafe

James Barker Band Announce Label Debut EP With New Breakup Anthem 'Champagne'

By Stevie Connor.

Platinum-selling Country four-piece, James Barker Band, is gearing up to bring their infectious camaraderie back into the Country scene with their highly anticipated label debut EP, Ahead of Our Time, scheduled for release on Oct. 20, 2023.

The announcement of the six-track collection comes hand-in-hand with their spirited and celebratory new smash, Champagne,” in conjunction with an all new visualizer.

“This project tells the story of who we are, where we’ve been, and where we’re headed in our next chapter,” shares Barker. “We were drawn to the title of Ahead of Our Time because these songs have been a part of our journey for a while. From the writing room to the stage, they’ve been with us on the road, interacting with our fans, and evolving along the way. As creators, we’ve experienced these songs ahead of their formal release, but the only part that matters is when it’s in the hands of our fans who can make it their own. We can’t wait for everyone to do just that on October 20!”

Ahead of Our Time promises to be a bold declaration of the band’s evolution and their trailblazing capabilities. In collaboration with some of Nashville’s hottest writers including Rodney Clawson, John Byron and Blake Pendergrass, the EP signifies a long-awaited milestone for the four-piece who have been consistently releasing music and selling out shows since 2015.

Featuring six songs, five of which were penned by frontman James Barker, each song showcases the band’s trademark cheeky lyrics and irresistible melodies – from the clever and catchy “Step On His Boots,” to the star-crossed “Ahead of Our Time” and the Country charm of “Champagne.” The second half of the EP finds “Meet Your Mama” tugging at the heartstrings, while “On the Water (feat. Dalton Dover)” serves as the project’s go-to party anthem. The EP will wrap with “Heartbeat” that captures the essence of love at first sight in a fast-paced musical journey.

Since aligning with RECORDS Nashville earlier this year and releasing their label debut single, “Meet Your Mama,” the band notched their fifth Canadian No.1 hit. With an impressive 277M global career streams to date, they continue to make waves, captivating audiences not only in their home country but on the international stage.

James Barker Band have fuelled an incredible story over the last eight years, largely on their own, from opening for local bands in dive bars to charting multiple No. 1 singles and hundreds of millions of global streams to headlining festivals and playing stages across North America and Europe.

After landing their record-setting, GOLD-certified fourth No. 1 in Canada with “New Old Trucks” feat. 14x Grammy-nominated and multi-PLATINUM selling artist Dierks Bentley the group currently holds the title of the most No. 1’s for a Canadian country group in the BDS/Mediabase era. With this, the multi-award-winning four-piece is continuing their meteoric ascent in Nashville.

Made up of James Barker (lead vocals/guitar), Taylor Abram (guitar/background vocals), Connor Stephen (drums), and Bobby Martin (bass), the members of James Barker Band grew up within an hour of each other in rural towns surrounding Toronto.

In 2017 these best-friends saw their hard work pay off when they sent their single “Chills” straight to the top of Billboard’s Canadian Hot 100 chart. From there, James Barker Band released a string of successful singles, including the Gold-certified tracks “Wastin’ Whiskey,” “New Old Trucks,” “Over All Over Again,” “There’s A Drink For That”, “Just Sayin’,” “It’s Working,” “Lawn Chair Lazy,” “Good Together,” “Summertime,” as well as Platinum-certified songs “Keep It Simple” and “Chills” and a GOLD-certified EP (Game On). Now, as the unstoppable group continues to trailblaze many miles from their hometowns with their label debut EP Ahead of Our Time, the opportunities are limitless – but the band remains grounded in their small-town roots.


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