Jason Harrod: Singing Between Doubt and Belief for 20 Years
There's reason to be hopeful for Harrod, however. In "Chains," the eighth track on "Highliner," he sings, "I'm not old / I'm not young / I been down / but I'm not done / I believe, I don't know why / Only you can make me shine."
And shining is almost literally what Harrod does after his show at Club Passim. He was in the middle of a national tour that brought him into people's homes and backyards in small towns and suburbs, as well as onto stages of music clubs in major cities. He had, for the most part, managed to keep his performance anxiety and persistent insecurities at bay while doing what he loves. And, at each stop, he was surrounded by people who love him for doing it.
Writing and singing over the past two decades has been, for Harrod, his literal lifeblood. As a professional musician, the songs pay the bills, but more than that, they connect Harrod with God. "For all my doubts and for all my periodic profligacy and dissolution, I can't escape the kernel of faith that is in me," Harrod tells me.
"I'm happy when I sing, Praise God. I believe when I sing. I might be a tired, angry guy, with an underlying suspicion of futility. But when I sing, I believe."
When he sings, his fans believe too.
Jonathan D. Fitzgerald is the author of Not Your Mother's Morals: How the New Sincerity Is Changing Pop Culture for the Better and the editor of Patrolmag.com.