Last time 4YE spoke to Noah Guthrie, he was just about to start filming the last episode of Glee. Now, a little over a year later, he’s back to his roots; writing and recording his own music as well as touring pretty much everywhere.
After a long string of dates throughout the U.S., Guthrie is currently playing in Europe. Ahead of his show in Frankfurt, Germany, he took time out to talk to us about everything he’s been up to since Glee ended, and what he hopes to achieve in the future.
Noah first came to the attention of many for his sensational YouTube covers. His acoustic version of LMFAO’s “Sexy and I Know It” became a viral sensation and from there he gained a whole legion of followers who love to listen to his soulful voice covering everything from Ed Sheeran to Sam Cook to Adele. But Guthrie is so much more than just another cover artist. He writes and records his own music too and that, along with touring, has pretty much kept him working non-stop for this past year.
“Right when Glee ended we (Noah is accompanied by his brother, Ian) hit the road,” he explains. “And we toured for about five or six months straight. Also during that time, I was writing a lot, trying to get some new stuff together. So we’ve recorded three songs so far, which I’m very happy about. Right now I’m trying to decide what the single is going to be.”
Six months of solid touring sounds like a lot and I ask if it ever takes its toll. Guthrie admits that such a long stint of shows right off the back of Glee was tough, but after taking time out over the Holidays, he’s relaxed, re-energized and ready to go.
“Before recently, really, I got a little burnt out. After Glee we just didn’t stop. We would go out for three weeks, come home for a day, go out for another three weeks, and you do get tired and miss home, but after a really good break I’m happy to be back.
“We’re doing more live dates this year, across the U.S. but we’re also looking to do more in Europe, too. It’s a little more of a block schedule this time around,” he explains. “So we’re touring for say two months then we’re home for two months, then touring again.”
Playing Roderick on Glee was Guthrie’s first ever acting gig; he was spotted on YouTube by a casting director, and the rest went from there. It was a huge step into an unknown world but definitely one that paid off, bringing his music to a whole new audience as well as giving him a taste of a different line of work.
“I now have an acting agent,” he tells me; “And if anything really cool came along, like a musical, then I’d love to do it, but music is still where it’s at for me.
“I love playing live,” Guthrie says. “Because you get the live energy you can’t get in a studio. Then again, I also love being in a studio and just getting to create for hours on end. I guess I’d do a sixty forty split on it. Playing live lets you connect with an audience right away; it gives you an immediate reaction.”
While the emphasis is on his original music for now, I asked Guthrie what he’s listening to right now, and if there’s any songs out there that he would like to cover in the future.
“Right now I’m listening to a lot of Indie artists, or straight up Americana. I’m listening to Chris Stapleton, or Jason Isbell- he’s fantastic. I’m also getting more into Country and Folk music. I always want to cover Adele’s music, and Ray Lamontagne has a new album too.”
And the artist he admires most? Well, like most of us, it’s hard to pinpoint just one specific name, but Guthrie does say U2 is his favorite band of all time, and Bono is an artist he really admires. He also says he’d like to emulate the success of Ray Lamontagne:
“He has the life I’d like to end up having. He makes the music he wants to make but he still has a private home life, and I think that’s where I want to be.”
The strongest impression I always get from Noah is that home and family are his priority. From touring with his brother, and his dad serving as his manager, to wanting to make sure he gets time at home whenever possible, it’s clear to see where his heart lies.
This warmth and open honesty extends to meeting his fans, too. He willingly stayed around after the show to meet everyone, taking time to talk with each person there.
As for the show itself, well, it was everything I had hoped for and more. Noah’s original music is a joy to listen to, and particular favorites of mine were “Among the Wildest Things” and “Pardon Me,” which I am fervently hoping will be the next single.
With some great covers thrown in to the mix, the evening ended with a heartfelt rendition of “You Are My Sunshine,” a song that Guthrie says a lot of fans always tell him they have a connection to. He’s not wrong; around me people were smiling and singing along, and his wonderful voice, coupled with personal memories that song conjures up for me, moved me to tears.
If you get a chance to see Noah Guthrie performing live, then go. Whether you know him from YouTube, or Glee, or you just want to check out something different, I can promise you will not be disappointed. His new music is pure escapism; heartfelt lyrics, great melodies and a sensational voice all combine to deliver something very special indeed.
For more information on Noah Guthrie’s music and tour dates, please visit his website.
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