With a focus on lyrical honesty and roots running deep in blue-collar Ohio, singer-songwriter Ben Gage delivers a range of relatable songs on his new EP, Same Song.
The Akron-based artist channels his experiences living along America’s rustbelt into resonating tales wrapped in an Americana sound, which are portrayed prominently on his new album.
After falling in and out of love with music in his younger years, Gage started a bluegrass band with his brother after college that allowed him to find passion in music again and travel the country, which always triggers inspiration in a musician. His influences stem from folk and country songwriting legends like Neil Young, Bob Dylan, and Townes Van Zandt to name a few.
The title track of the EP, “Same Song” allows Gage to be vulnerable and ask the listener if they feel the same way he does. He expresses his worries about a legacy after death, and dealing with a head full of anxious thoughts. The song has bright mandolins and a big chorus that drives home the instant familiarity Gage portrays in his writing. Along with his Americana sound, there are hints of his bluegrass and gospel influences, as he preaches about how we all wish to be loved and remembered.
The rhythmic earworm that is the third track “Tomorrow” continues to prove that Gage has a talent for capturing a story that can resonate with everyone. The song has a toe-tapping sound and a beat that can get the listener on their feet. The groove of the song is playful and precise, and it is easy to feel the palpable energy between musicians. Through the guitar picking and mandolin playing, Gage is able to transport the listener to a down-home bar in Anywhere, USA.
The following track, “Keep On,” opens with a harmonica and an opening line, “I’m gonna eat my steak on fine China / Sleeping in a king size bed / Every night I’m counting my money / But I’d rather be counting your kisses instead.” It’s a sweet bluesy love song about how Gage doesn’t need riches, but rather have the love of his partner. The song is fun and puts twists on fairy tales as he uses scenarios to drive home his heartfelt feelings.
Gage’s love for the craft of songwriting shines through in his music, and Same Song demonstrates this, capturing familiar feelings and transforming them into introspective, feel-good songs.