SONG PREMIERE: Jake Pinto (Antibalas / Magic City Hippies) Steps Out Solo with Indie Pop Earworm “Best That We Can Be”

Photo credit: Lauren Desberg

Jake Pinto’s eclectic musical story has shaped a charmingly honest solo debut rich in instinctive melodicism and cultured arrangements. Released by Mother West on March 31st, Sad Songs for Happy People is at once confessional and celebratory, marrying timeless songsmith instincts and 70s musicality with nuanced funkiness and shadows of jazz.

Sad Songs for Happy People features a who’s who of NY luminaries including Miles Francis (Will Butler, Antibalas), Tim Kuhl (Margaret Glaspy), Dylan Aiello (Elizabeth and the Catapult), and Dillon Treacy (Alto Palo, Amber Mark).

The result is 11 ultra-accomplished tracks of eclectic, Americana- and blues-flecked indie rock delivered unfiltered, straight from the source. These are songs with longevity, of intrinsic emotional and musical quality rather than adherence to genre or style. Most are keys based, embroidered with snazzy brass, tasty guitar interjections, and grand rhythmic flourishes.

Sad Songs for Happy People was set for release right when the COVID-19 pandemic hit and then further delayed when Jake’s talents were sought out by Miami psych-funksters Magic City Hippies and Brooklyn’s afrobeat flag bearers Antibalas, leading to months of global touring. He even did double duty as a solo opener for MCH.

Today Glide is excited to premiere the album’s first single “Best That We Can Be.” The tune finds Jake dancing over simple left-hand piano figure as the song blossoms into a sharp piece of indie pop that draws from the likes of The Beatles, Dr. Dog and The Strokes. With its notes of power pop, rock and even a nice dose of soul, “Best That We Can Be” gradually builds momentum that is pushed forward by psyched out yet simple instrumentals and a true earworm chorus. Though it may mark a bit of a departure from his work with Antibalas and Magic City Hippies, fans of both acts will likely find plenty to love.


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