It’s hard to put a label on the type of music in Nashville band Judah & The Lion songs since their sound changes from album to album. Although Judah & The Lion songs might best be described as alternative with bluegrass roots and folk-rock influence, among other genres. Judah & The Lion’s three members, Judah Akers, Brian Macdonald, and Nate Zuercher, have released music since forming in 2011 at Belmont University.
Judah & The Lion songs nearly all have lines that make you wish you knew how to play mandolin and banjo. Here are five Judah & The Lion songs that you need to hear.
This song is a gorgeous celebration of the desire to travel the world while knowing there’s a place for you to settle down at the end of your journey. The singers recount the adventures they’ve had and the ones they’ve yet to discover but note that they want to “grow old/ Somewhere below that Mason-Dixon Line.” Even if you’re not a Southerner at heart, something about Judah & The Lion songs will make you long for a peaceful home in the South.
“Suit And Jacket”
Figuring out who you want to be without sacrificing your dreams along the way? “Suit And Jacket” is the Judah & The Lion song for you. When your friends are taking nine to five jobs and you’re “growing old too quickly,” take a listen to this song and know that you aren’t alone.
It’s a reminder, as much to the band members themselves as it is to the audience, to stay true to yourself regardless of what others do. It’s also one of the quintessentially classic Judah & The Lion songs, with a chorus that makes you want to clap your hands, stomp your feet, and sing along at the top of your lungs.
You can definitely hear a more alternative vibe in this song about wanting to enact positive change in the world and “build love where there’s hate.” It was released in 2016 and somehow seems more and more relevant with every passing day, especially if you read and dislike the news. Judah & The Lion songs are great for that type of mood.
“Take It All Back 2.0”
Have you ever felt like you missed out on something great with an ex and you’d trade your current life for another chance with them? This is the Judah & The Lion song for that exact situation. “I’d take it all back, take it all back, take it all back,/ I’d take it all back just to have you.”
It features some truly stellar mandolin and banjo riffs, so if you want some rad string instrumentals, listen to this one and feel satisfied. The group also made a version of this with a string quartet that’s more laidback and is beautifully calming.
“pictures” feat. Kacey Musgraves
Honestly, this is filled with all of the feelings. It starts off simply and slowly builds by subtly adding more instruments while keeping a beautiful melancholy sound. All of the instruments drop out when the singers say “I hate that I’m taking our pictures off the wall” with only a soft accompanying drumbeat.
It’s gorgeous, and I completely fell in love with this song when it was released as a single prior to their latest album. Kacey Musgraves’s voice also complements those of the Judah & The Lion’s singers’ really well and makes this one of the best Judah & The Lion songs, in my opinion.