Today’s song is “Moonbeam” by Joe Barksdale.
Growing up in Detroit, Michigan, Joe Barksdale has always had a love, appreciation, and passion for music. When he was younger, he played both the violin and saxophone, but it wasn’t until 2013 that he picked up a guitar to help cope with a significant loss in his life.
At the time, Joe was in his 3rd season playing with the St. Louis Rams. The guitar came naturally, and just one year later he began playing with some of the best musicians in the city at local blues jams in St. Louis, MO. In 2015 Joe signed with the San Diego Chargers and took his talents to California. Joe continued to hone his skills and in 2016 he started ‘Joe’s Jam Session’ at Humphreys Backstage Live.
Joe loved the feeling of being onstage and appreciated the opportunity to express himself through song. In 2017, Joe decided he wanted to be known as more than just a professional athlete and released his first studio project, Butterflies, Rainbows, & Moonbeams (BRM). Blues Rock Review gave the album 9/10 saying, “The amazing thing about Butterflies, Rainbows,and Moonbeams is the immersive world created by Barksdale. It’s an upbeat world, where funk and blues mingle, and where songs pop into existence, not because they fit within a certain genre, but because they’ll make the listener (and one suspects, the performer) happy. It’s also a world where an NFL tackle manages to create one of the more delightful, sincere records of 2018.”
In 2018, itching to get back in the studio, Joe spent his bye-week recording his second project, Electric Soul, with legendary Narada Michael Walden. Electric Soul was released in April 2019 and Andrea Caccese of Bandcampdiaries.com described it as “A really perfect example of the artist’s creative vision and musical aesthetics, really hitting the mark with a fantastic tone and a really huge sounding production. The vocal performances really are the cherry on top here. Joe has a passionate voice, which exudes energy and vibe, yet at the same time, it can be up close and personal, revealing multiple sides to his work. This is totally not a black and white release. It’s in full color, and if sound could be described with images, this would be close to a Jackson Pollock painting!”
In June 2019, Joe announced his retirement from the National Football League in order to pursue music full-time in Austin, TX. When all is said and done, Joe Barksdale will be a household name. His music is something special, and through his message of love and unity, which is needed now more than ever, he hopes to bring people from various backgrounds and lifestyles together once again.
This track is the follow up to his previous single “Black Majik” which will also appear on his upcoming sophomore album Sincerely due out this September.
The song is an homage to Barksdale’s love of the moon. In an interview with V13, he describes the song saying, “When I was younger, I fell in love with space and science and one of the things that always fascinated me was the moon. Everyone marvels at the sun, but I never felt that people appreciated the moon. Things are easy to do in the daytime, but things get infinitely harder in the dark of night,”
“Life is the same way, on the good days it’s easy to find support and help from friends, but on the bad days (dark times) when you feel alone, it’s the moon that helps you find your way. We all have different moonbeams in our lives, the moonbeams that I am referring to in this song are my fans. This is a love letter to my fans who are a huge source of help during my dark times when I want to quit or feel like it isn’t worth it, they are a constant source of inspiration and motivation.”
This is the perfect track for the upcoming summer season. Barksdale is virtuoso on the guitar. His chords have inviting melodies with a grooving funk that lights up the listener and puts them at ease. His message of love and light show that you are never alone and always have a “moonbeam” shining down on you.