Leaving Jackson | The Empty Pockets

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About the artist

Quirky and charismatic, The Empty Pockets deliver brash rock & roll music with unrelenting hooks, soaring vocals, honest lyrics and carefully crafted songwriting.

It was a scorching Chicago summer in 2006 when long-time friends, Josh Solomon, Danny Rosenthal and Nate Bellon, officially became a band. After recording their first original demo, "Missteps," the boys starred in a 2007 theatrical production of the Buddy Holly Story which served as a showcase for the new group. The band attracted the attention of local morning show personality Scott Mackay (WLS-FM Chicago) and the show’s success lead to a tribute album and critical acclaim in print, along with television and radio appearances. Playing as Buddy Holly and the Crickets each night was a rock and roll roots education in itself. But it also left an indelible mark on The Empty Pockets’ music, focusing their sound on driving rockabilly grooves thick with rhythm and blues and thoughtful melodies and harmonies in classic pop song structures.

With the Buddy Holly buzz, the boys went back in the studio to record a full-length album of their original music. They released "Under the Bed" at the beginning of 2008 – a fun, multifaceted album so full of catchy refrains that Nickelodeon chose to use the album in it’s entirety on iCarly, Zoey101 and Drake & Josh. Produced by industry veteran, Rick Fritz (Brian Wilson, John Mellencamp), the single “Fall Right Now” tells the story of a new relationship that can’t help but blossom into true romance even though there are indications it may not be the right time to fall in love.

In an unexpected case of life imitating art, Josh’s muse for “Fall Right Now,” Erika Brett, was soon asked to join the band and the new foursome headed into another recording session, this time for a holiday duet. While on their first tour, The Empty Pockets' single, "Baby It's Cold Outside” – a spirited mash-up of two holiday classics – hit radio with airplay on over 100 markets nationwide.

In January of 2009, the band toured extensively throughout the year, including a showcase at SXSW, piquing the interest of legendary manager David Spero (Joe Walsh, Cat Stevens, Dickey Betts) who agreed to manage the band in late 2009.

In 2010, The Empty Pockets had a breakout year, sharing the stage with Jennifer Hudson, Portugal the Man, Buffalo Springfield’s Richie Furay and headlining historic venues like the House of Blues Chicago, Schubas and Millennium Park. Their unreleased song, “Take Me,” about the conflict in Afghanistan was featured in award-winning documentary, “Patrol Base Jaker.”

Energized by these performances, the band toured and recorded relentlessly in 2011, playing over 200 events, including opening for Dave Mason and playing alongside members of the James Gang and the Nelson Brothers, all while recording and releasing two new EPs (“Introducing the Empty Pockets” and “Holiday EP”) as well as full-length album (“Nay Says and Maybes”) set to launch in 2012.

The Empty Pockets pride themselves on what they call “handcrafted rock and roll.” Their music is intentionally devoid of sequencing, auto-tune or digital pollution in favor of rich, analog sounds and skillful musicianship true to the band’s performances onstage. These guys (and gal) are unapologetically the real deal, engaging a wide range of audiences and exciting fans both old and new. Catch the band as they travel the country in their van, The Pocket Rocket, in support of their new album.


Leaving Jackson

I've been driving through this damn town far too long
I've even let my hair down in the wind
But I can't shake these feelings
I thought it be so easy
I find that it's the rut that I'm stuck in

I need a push in the right direction
Just a shove with affection
Maybe a few words written down
Just a love song with a sweet sound

I wake up every evening and have to fight the feeling
To call you up and hurry you back home
And even though it's been two years
Since I shead my final tears
It aint any easier on my own

I need a push in the right direction
Just a shove with affection
Maybe a few words written down
Just a love song with a sweet sound
Just a love song with sweet sound

I grow stronger with every step I take
I may bend but I won't break

First I cleaned my bedroom floor
Took a walk out my back door
Watched the sun go down in the western sky
Grabbed my bags and left that place
Now no one there would know my face
Found the word I needed... goodbye

I took a step in the right direction
Just a shove with affection
Found a few words, put 'em down
Wrote a love song with a sweet sound
Wrote a love song with a sweet sound