Our Song of the Day comes from Zephaniah O’Hora, a leading light of New York’s burgeoning roots country scene. “Way Down In My Soul”, is a beautiful country number that winds back the clock, a golden-era country song while channelling a bit of the Bakersfield scene. We couldn’t wait to share this song which was scheduled to be premiered today on Folk Radio UK so we cheated a little and slipped it into our latest Lost in Transmission mix here.
The track also draws on OHora’s experience with psychedelics – he sums up the songwriting nicely though:
“I wanted to make the connection of the archetypal love song to the psychedelic experience. The way a romantic partner can turn your world upside down, in the same way a powerful mystical experience can. These things have life long lasting affects, and I wanted to highlight my experience in a song.” – Zephaniah OHora
Perhaps it’s a credit to his ability to imagine himself in any place or time. OHora is originally from New Hampshire, where he grew up playing music for worship meetings at his church. These evangelical meetings centred around improvisational music, intense prayer, and even speaking in tongues. “It was kind of like a cult, although I didn’t realise it at the time”, he says with a laugh. Leaving the church, OHora walked a winding path through his early 20s. “I experimented with psychedelics at the time, and after you have that first life-changing trip, everything seems to take on a more surrealistic nature.” Listening to the LSD-inspired “Way Down in my Soul”, you can almost envision OHora floating through a 70’s country love affair.
This Highway is Zephaniah O’Hora’s debut album which is due for release on June 8th.