SONG PREMIERE:David Burchfield Delivers Poignant Healing Folk On “Ain’t Gonna Be Easy”

Years before David Burchfield refined his distinctive blend of Greenwich Village folk, Woody Guthrie wanderlust and effortlessly genuine Americana, the Kansas City native earned his songwriting stripes in the trenches alongside like-minded artists Joe Pug and David Ramirez. Growing up in a house soundtracked by Bonnie Raitt & Neil Young records, Burchfield picked up the guitar at age 12, and cut his teeth singing Sunday-morning hymns in the church. Later, he spent his college summers working at a wilderness area in New Mexico, picking old-time songs with friends around the campfire at night.

“I learned a lot from that time,” Burchfield says of his unplugged nights in the Rocky Mountain backcountry. “I developed a deep love of traditional country and folk music, and it also taught me about connecting with an audience in the simplest, most direct way—no lights, no PA, and with just a few feet between us. That’s still my favorite way to perform. It’s all about connection.”

State to State (out 6/5), his newest release, finds Burchfield traveling across the American heartland in search of stability and inspiration. Brimming with coastlines, highways, rolling plains, old hometowns and new destinations, the record evokes a vivid picture of a songwriter’s wandering. Along the way, State to State also shines a light on the people, places and near-death experiences that have shaped Burchfield’s music and outlook on life.

Recorded in American Fork, Utah, with Burchfield’s road band and producer Joshua James, State to State is filled with layers of guitar, upright piano, shuffling percussion, stately fiddle and the detail-rich lyrics of a troubadour who’s seen his share of these United States. On the softly spun “Dishes in the Sink,” Burchfield struggles to settle into an unfamiliar home, pedal steel swooning in the background, while the slow-motion swagger of “Ain’t Gonna Be Easy” finds him reflecting on relationships with his hometown friends over some understated brass and the steady chug of an electric guitar. As this 11-track journey plays out, Burchfield meanders from tender acoustic moments to lushly amplified highlights like the soulful stomp of “Feelin’ Pretty Alright,” a track that would be right at home on The Band’s proto-Americana gem Music From Big Pink. The result is an album that highlights Burchfield’s acoustic roots and electrifying present.

Glide is thrilled to premiere “Ain’t Gonna Be Easy” (below)  a charming folk number that radiates with the warmth of John Prine and the introspective glare of Ray Lamontagne. Burchfield sings with a strummy commentary that brings both nostalgia and poignancy, making for an impactful first listen.

“One New Year’s Eve, I was back in my parents’ house before heading out to a party with a bunch of my oldest friends,” says Burchfield. “I was feeling angsty, so—exactly like back in my teen years—I wrote an angsty song in my childhood bedroom. For all the work I’d done to leave town and grow into a better version of myself, it just felt like everyone around me in my hometown was treating me like the old me. I mean—how could they know any better?

“Then I thought about the other side of that—how great it is to be known so well by folks who have loved you your whole life. I thought especially about one of my best friends from high school. I haven’t seen much of him the last few years, but every once in a while we get together and reminds me of parts of myself that I’d forgotten about.”


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