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Tomorrow, Wednesday (3/9/2016) on DittyTV –5pm CST Chicago-based artist, Joe Goodkin‘s video for the song “Gray” will premiere on their show, “Campfire”.

Ditty TV is a 24/7 Americana music video channel you can watch several different ways: Google Play, Kindle Fire, Smart TV, Roku, Tivo, Google TV, Opera TV. (It’s a free subscription on Roku, which is how I watch). So hook it up and tune in! More about Joe Goodkin and the song, “Gray” below. 



Chicago-based pop and indie singer/songwriter, Goodkin recently released his first solo effort, Record of Life with the song, “Gray” receiving more response than any song he’s ever created. Along with great press, Record of Life received college radio spins on more than 100 stations including Los Angeles’ famed KCRW station. To celebrate the song and the characters within it, Goodkin, along with Blackbox Visual, has created an animated video for the song. 

“Gray” is the first of Goodkin’s songs composed just for Record of Life. Here he focuses on “the fragility of life.” Written from a different place—the rumination on the impending losses surrounding him—and it put him in a different frame of mind. Rather than writing with his band, Paper Arrows, and rather than having a broad, shallow connection with his lyrics, he sought to find a deep, and narrow one. In fact, while working on the songwriting he lost both his grandfather and the dog mentioned in the tune.

“Gray” changes the pace with a catchy guitar melody. The song begins with the story of the relationship between a man and his dog. The character looks back on the day he adopted the dog from the pound and the instant connection between the two. A connection that lasted the test of time. The song takes a slight change to focus on the main character and his ill grandfather. The song symbolizes how hard it is to deal with change, loss and the circle of life while focusing on the positive, which comes from the negative.

“Goodkin debuts his frankest, most emotionally-affecting work of his career over the six tracks of which Record of Life is comprised, dealing with explaining his take on more sweeping facets of human life through the exemplification of his own experiences. Perhaps this is most palpable on “Gray”, which has to do about Goodkin’s own personal losses in life, regarding his dog and his grandfather.”–PopMatters


“Record of Life, (is) a heartbreaking, profound, self-aware and self-referential set of six astoundingly personal songs that cover marriage, divorce, life, death, dogs and cats, love and loss, regrets, getting older, friends we don’t see enough, fragmented childhood memories, and just about anything else that makes up what you could call “the human condition,” all set against the backdrop of Chicago. In short, hyperbole aside, it’s nothing short of a statement of beauty and a triumph of the human spirit.”—Anhedonic Headphones

“In less than six tracks, Goodkin transforms from indie front person to a Mutations-era Beck while cutting their teeth on the early works of Cohen.”—Turnstyled Junkpiled Magazine

“I have no doubt that Joe Goodkin could write a song a day for eternity, and each one would shed a little light on the human experience. His powers of observation are as keen as his tunes are inviting.”—Parcbench

“Chicago native and Paper Arrows frontman Joe Goodkin details the intimacy of (his) formative years within a succinct package of songs delivered in a most humble of manners in the remarkably revealing Record of Life.”—Moxipop

“Modern singer-songwriter set about the travails of his own life, complete with sounds from a haunted guitar. Drawing on the touchstones of his life, his stuff will reassure you that you aren’t alone.”—Midwest Record

“Goodkin sings his way through several studio-enhanced ambient offerings created by layering his 1963 Gibson ES-125t… The new EP is a selection of sincere songs that offer intimate insights to his own inner workings with which audiences may oft’times empathize.”—AXS Examiner

“Joe Goodkin’s EP Record of Life is a compilation of life stories set to beautiful, soft music and vocals. Record of Life is simple enough for people to easily relate, yet so full of experiences that strong emotions are evoked.”—Red Dirt Report

“The founder of Chicago’s indie rockers Paper Arrows produces a solo effort that is intoxicating and subtly powerful. An alt twist on ambient folk, he has a knack of taking somber tones and giving them an uplifting quality. The pure emotion flows freely from tracks like “Gray” and “My Friends.” Joe has opened up his soul on this effort, creating music that will no doubt touch you with its hauntingly beautiful landscape.”—Music Morsels