Music I’m Listening To: Big Phony

I debated for a bit about who I should feature first but the timing was perfect for the first musician in our new series to be Big Phony. Why? Because his new album, Big Phony dropped today. Besides I’ve been listening to it a lot and you should definitely check out. Like now.

Want to know more first, we got you covered.

Music I’m Listening To

Big Phony has been in my regular rotation of music since I first saw him live at South by Southwest (SXSW) in 2014 (where I bought a couple of his CDs after the show). While he will often say that he sings sad songs, there’s just something about his music that speaks to your heart, and after listening to his new album, it’s not just sad songs he sings. But they do all convey emotion so well. From “But I Will, Everyday” to “Empty Bottles” to “Girls Like You Don’t Go For Guys Like Me”, there are tons of great songs that speak to emotions, love and life.

Who is Big Phony?

Big Phony is a Korean-American singer-songwriter called Bobby (but who goes by the stage name Big Phony). He’s originally from New York and he’s been living and making fabulous music in Korea for the past few years. I interviewed him at SXSW and he gave wonderfully in depth answers that introduce himself and his music. It’s a bit dated now but still a nice intro if you’re new to Big Phony.

He launched a successful Kickstarter campaign earlier this year to help fund his 6th full length album and it’s now available to everyone – it came out today in fact. You should check it out!

“Big Phony”

As one of the Kickstarter backers, I’ve been listening to the album, self-titled Big Phony, for a while and it’s good. Like ‘can’t stop listening and am annoying my office mates because it’s on repeat’ good. Each song showcases Big Phony’s voice well, and in some different ways. There’s a real retro 60’s feel to “This Might Be Love” while “Shoot The Shit” highlights how well his voice conveys emotion. In fact, the entire album is simply a beautiful showcase of how his lyrics make the listener feel like we’re a part of the conversation. They wrap you in emotion – whether happiness, sadness or feelings of love – and welcome you to come along the journey with him.

While Big Phony has always been good at conveying emotion with his lyrics and music, this album leaves you smiling. There’s a positive, upbeat vibe and such honesty in the lyrics that the more you listen, the more you feel connected to the music.

And there’s not a bad song on the album, I’ve listened to it more than a dozen times and still can’t pick my favourite. But you can’t go wrong with “I Need To Be Alone” or “Shoot The Shit” or “Be Mine, Baby” which is one of the sweetest love songs I’ve heard in a while. Or any of the songs, really.

Quite simply, I love the album and can’t say enough how much I think you should give it a listen. And if you like it like I do, buy it!

Track List

  1. Back To Seoul
  2. Hanging On A Thread
  3. Ready Or Not
  4. This Might Be Love
  5. On The Count Of Three
  6. I Need To Be Alone
  7. Pullout Couch
  8. Shoot The Shit
  9. Be Mine, Baby

You can buy the album on Bandcamp and iTunes. And you should, it’s amazing! Plus the first music video from his new album is also out.

Final Thoughts

I’ve been listening to Big Phony since the first time I saw him live 2 1/2 years ago and there are just so many of his songs that are in my regular rotation. And while I don’t want to say that his new album, Big Phony, is his best yet… it is. I can’t say it too many times. It’s amazing! Go listen to it. Go buy it. Now!

Just the facts: social media edition

Want to stay up-to-date with Big Phony or buy out his music, it’s easy… just click the links below.

Cindy Zimmer

Live life to the fullest everyday - this is a the philosophy I try to live by and it's taken me on many adventures. I write about Korean culture from a non-Korean perspective as the editor/founder of ATK Magazine and I'm the Chair of the Board of Directors of the Toronto Korean Film Festival (TKFF). Previously, I ran a Korean-English language exchange group (in Toronto) for 3 years to stay connected to my three years living in Korea as an English teacher. I love music, film, food and sports and write about 3 of the 4.

One thought on “Music I’m Listening To: Big Phony

  • October 3, 2016 at 3:46 pm

    Hey Cindy! I’m subscribed to Spotify and the album is also available there. 🙂 I’m listening to it now. And you are right, he does takes you in a journey through the songs! When I listened to the first song (Back to Seoul), I immediately thought that it’s perfect for a leisurely drive or for when riding the bus/train. His voice invokes happy memories or something… You know what i mean! Anyway, thanks for this feature! I’m loving “Be Mine,Baby” too.

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