SONG PREMIERE: The Silent Comedy Return With Exultant & Personal “On Your Side”

Photo by Rebecca Joelson

Brothers Joshua and Jeremiah Zimmerman and their band The Silent Comedy should be headlining stages the size of Avett Brothers and Mumford Sons, who at similar times a decade-plus pass were riding the wave of the new Americana movement that brought new instruments and voices to the mainstream. The band enjoyed years of touring, performing with the likes of Dave Matthews Band, Queens of the Stone Age, Mumford and Sons, Arctic Monkeys, and Vampire Weekend, and gracing stages at festivals such as Bonnaroo, Wakarusa, Under The Big Sky, Summer Meltdown and more.  Unfortunately, the world had other plans in store, yet they never lost their vigor and aptitude for top-shelf songwriting.

The band recorded and self-released a series of albums for their growing fan base: Sunset Stables (2007), The Silent Comedy EP (2008), Common Faults (2010), and the Cruelty & Clemency EP (2011). Their reputation continued to grow, and soon the brothers’ music had sold hundreds of thousands of copies and been streamed in the millions, despite no label support. Studio collaborations with Kris Kristofferson and members of Dave Matthews Band followed. 

The brothers channeled a time of conflict into 2018’s Enemies Multiply. In fact, for a few years, Joshua couldn’t bring himself to listen to the album. Born of a rough patch in the Zimmerman brothers’ personal and professional lives, it was too personal, too raw. Despite the album being the best work in the history of the band, the project was shelved. Then the 2016 election happened. “Suddenly, I realized the feeling of this moment was what we wrote this music for,” Joshua recalls. “At that particular instant I felt like a lot more people could take comfort in the songs than before.” 

Near the end of recording Enemies Multiply Joshua found himself struggling with an acute mental health crisis. After a tour of Europe, the band took a hiatus from performing live, and largely stepped away from music to expand their creative horizons. Joshua returned to his original love of visual storytelling, filming and directing for television (including special episodes of the series Vikings and the Hulu original series Wild Crime). He bought a house in the Catskill Mountains of upstate New York and did a full renovation largely on his own. Jeremiah channeled his talent for songwriting and production into scoring for television and sound design for podcasts (including breakout Stephen King project Strawberry Spring). 

The Silent Comedy is back with their punctuating new single “On Your Side,” (below) which Glide is premiering below. The song hones an insightful flair of gospel-turned folk Americana that rivals the strongest works of Lord Huron, Mt. Joy, and Gregory Alan Isakov. This next chapter of The Silent Comedy promises to reclaim the momentum and critical acclaim this triumphant collective began years back.

“On Your Side’ is a song about relationships undergoing turmoil and difficulty even when those in the relationships are trying to endure. It was written during a time of upheaval in every corner of my life; friendships, a romantic relationship, family, and professional relationships were all in a state of uncertainty. There are times when things unravel even with the highest effort and it’s hard to convince loved ones that the damage to those relationships isn’t intentional but whatever the reason, mental health issues in my case, the damage is done and healing those connections can be a daunting task. This song was written to try and explain how that feels inside a situation when being understood seems so far away,” says Jeremiah Zimmerman.

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