Andrew Combs’ “Pearl” Finds Beauty in the Darker Side


If I had to pick my favorite record to come out of Nashville so far this year, it would be Andrew CombsAll These Dreams. Moody and melodic at the same time, the arrangements fall somewhere between classic country and Laurel Canyon. Meanwhile there’s a wounded quality to his singing voice, but not so much that he comes across as a complainer. Instead, it makes you want to listen closer because he has something to say.

A cornerstone of the new collection is “Pearl,” a poetic reminder that things aren’t always what they seem. Combs was inspired to write it after browsing through photographer Richard Avedon’s portraits of the American West – especially those people on the fringes of society.

“I guess I’d say the premise would be about finding beauty in the darker side of things. Maybe we as humans have a tendency to be ignorant towards those others who aren’t exactly like us. I wanted to just showcase the beauty of that, and how those people can be great as well,” Combs says. “It’s a slow, kind of sad-sounding song as well, so to have a bit of hope in there is nice.”

Combs is celebrating the release of All These Dreams at Grimey’s in Nashville on Tuesday night (March 3), followed by shows in Nashville, Chicago and Indianapolis by the end of the week.

For this performance, he’s joined by local musicians Erin McKaskle, Molly Parden and Jason Goforth. Take a look at the CMT Edge live performance of Andrew Combs’ “Pearl.”