On the Edge: Robby Hecht

photo by Tasha Thomas/Shore Fire Media

Nashville-based Robby Hecht has been releasing albums since 2008, but he’s just now—for his third full-length—getting around to naming one after himself. “The other two I was able to tie them all together thematically, at least in my mind, and come up with something that seemed like it unified the whole album,” he says. “With this one, the songs are more diverse. They run a larger gamut of songwriting and I couldn’t come up with anything that tied it all together.”

“The one drawback is that I had to put my face on the cover,” he adds, laughing.

Robby Hecht appeared in late March and offers 13 shots of Robby’s introspective songwriting and delicate, country-tinged vocals. He marvels at and then recoils against the immensity of the Big Apple in “New York City,” which was inspired by friends.

“We almost moved there about four years ago, my wife and I,” he says. “We ended up deciding to stay in Nashville. I just have a lot of friends who have moved there. Watching them all experience that city, it’s different from anywhere else. It’s a different kind of place. It’s faster and bigger and brighter but darker at the same time.”

The night lights of a Spanish-speaking town shine above the spooky murder ballad “Barrio Moon,” which Robby penned as a writing group assignment. “I don’t know how to write my own experiences with ‘Barrio Moon,’ so I ended up making up a little story about it,” he says. “It was fun. The end of the song is super weird, I throw a little Spanish in there and nobody really gets what I’m talking about and I don’t even know if I do, but it sounds cool,” he adds.

“Soon I Was Sleeping,” a duet with Rose Cousins, is a full-on weepy country waltz about drinking someone off your mind. “I started it then and couldn’t finish it for a really long time,” he recalls. “I think I ended up writing the verses three years later and we almost put it on the last record. Then on this new record I still didn’t know if it fit, but I wanted to do a duet and it was the best duet I think I’ve ever written.”

Country music is what drew Robby to Music City, of course, and it’s something he found in the early 2000s when pop music favored the teen idols over songwriter types.

“I was listening to the radio all the time and I found country music was an alternative to what pop music had become for me,” he says. “I found the lyrics were meaningful again and I got drawn in from that.”

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