With the release of Hope and a Hand Grenade earlier this year, Shayfer James proved himself to be a songwriting tour de force. Between understated ballads, gothic-influenced rock, and a blues strut, the multi-sided singer-songwriter has begun turning heads en masse in recent months, donating song revenue to the York Street Project, ACLU, and the Yellowhammer Fund along the way.
Following up his full-length release with a new single, James invites listeners in through another window to his heart with “New York Doesn’t Remind Me”. The tender ballad gradually unfurls into an emotionally captivating tale of a love come and gone. With distant, yearning instrumentation coming in layers as James delivers a poignant vocal performance, the song recalls a poetic pining redolent of Various Positions-era songwriting.
On “New York Doesn’t Remind Me”, James tells PopMatters, “The places I describe in the song are all actual spots where my own love affair blossomed and declined in New York City, making this song deeply personal to me.”