Reporting Courtney E. Smith
Bluesy singer Josh Krajcik was perhaps an unlikely contestant for a reality singing competition, but he wowed America when he auditioned for the first season of the X Factor. The self-described “burrito slinger” stepped on stage to reveal a gravely voice that impressed the judges and viewers alike. His talent took him all the way to the finals and now to the release of his debut album, Blindly, Lonely, Lovely, released earlier this month.
Krajcik spoke to Radio.com about his songwriting and recording process, at which point he took a moment to tear apart a popular notion people have about how that process works.
“I started working on Blindly, Lonely, Lovely [in] February [of 2012],” Krajcik recounted. “I recorded it in all different places: a couple of places in L.A., some places up in Calabasas, Malibu and in London — in a couple different parts of London. That’s sort of where the record title comes from. I think some people have this notion that [making a record] you just go into one studio and you make it and you’re done and you walk out. But it’s not really like that. For me it was kind of blindly jumping into a strange city, and a strange place. And being alone. And hoping that something lovely comes from it.”
Krajcik wrote and recorded Blindly, Lonely, Lovely in tandem, and the act of working and traveling solo across continents led the Ohio native to a new level of inspiration.
“Writing in a strange city can be very inspiring,” Krajcik said. “Just being alone and sort of walking into a bar in Hammersmith in London and meeting new people — it’s sort of funky, in your head you know? It’s easy to pull inspiration from being halfway around the world and alone. There’s just something about walking down a street alone in a city that I’ve never been to and sort of getting lost that is inspiring to me. And meeting new people. I might just overhear a conversation in a pub and hear a line that I remember… At home, for me, it’s more friends and family and relaxing. When I’m traveling is when I feel like I’m really working.”
But to watch his “Back Where We Belong” video is to see Krajcik back where he feels he belongs: in a wood-paneled pub, with a pint and a notebook to scribble down lyrics.