2019 American Music Awards

Anthony D'Amato Reflects on America's Division Within the Stunning 'Some Folks': Exclusive

Vivian Wang
Anthony D'Amato

Anthony D’Amato takes on the world in the introspective “Some Folks,” which Billboard premieres today (Oct. 30). One of five tracks included on his upcoming Five Songs From New Orleans EP, out Nov. 15 via Velvet Elk Records, the stripped down country-folk tune features Esther Rose on vocals.

Alongside soaring string features and a steady acoustic guitar beat, D’Amato’s calming vocals shine through. Throughout the song, he details the various religious, economic and racial beliefs some Americans have -- as well as the unique way people prefer their coffee, neighborhoods and lifestyle -- all while encompassing a universal message of acceptance.

"It feels like the divides in America--economic, political, racial--are growing wider every day,” D’Amato tells Billboard. “I wrote ‘Some Folks’ while I was in New Orleans, but it could be really be about any of the countless cities and towns I visit on tour that are grappling with issues of segregation, gentrification, and inequality. You walk down the street and the lines are often drawn pretty starkly: some folks are welcome, some folks aren't."

D'Amato enlisted the help of Rose, who was the first artist he saw perform live when he arrived in New Orleans. Drawn to her timeless sound, he’d later approach her to collaborate on “Some Folks.”

"She was playing these really infectious songs that sounded totally timeless, and everybody in the bar had partnered up and was two-stepping to the music,” he says. “I knew right away she'd be perfect for ‘Some Folks,’ and fortunately she was cool enough to come over to the house and record it with me."

The EP was written and recorded entirely by the New Jersey native during a month-long stint housesitting an old 1800's Garden District home. Fittingly, Five Songs From New Orleans features all New Orleans musicians and singers he met during his stay there, including Chloe Feoranzo (Pokey LaFarge, Asleep At The Wheel), Matt Rhody (Kermit Ruffins, Leyla McCalla), and Kayla Jasmine (Tank And The Bangas), among others. In celebration of the new project, D’Amato will perform a hometown show on Nov. 13 at Rockwood Music Hall in New York.

Listen to “Some Folks” below.

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