Through determination and rehabilitation, Will Sexton returned to music after he suffered a stroke in 2009. The Texas-bred artist makes another big step with the upcoming release of his first solo album in more than a decade, Don't Walk the Darkness, whose soulful "Oh the Night (Night Owls Call)" premieres exclusively on Billboard today (Jan. 23).
Sexton has, in fact, made many changes during the past 11 years. He met and married fellow singer-songwriter Amy LaVere, who's become a regular collaborator. He moved from Austin to Memphis and became the leader of the house band at Big Legal Mess/Bible & Tire Recording Co. founder Bruce Watson's Delta-Sonic Sound. And in the time that led up to Don't Walk the Darkness, due out March 6, Sexton found himself at the start of what feels like a brand new adventure.
"I've been creating music since I was 12-years-old," Sexton tells Billboard. "It was a work in progress for decades. There was never a break. There was always something that needed to be finished. With the stroke, my brain had never been quieted by anything before, so that was a new [experience]. Starting a new record, I'm going and buying a new notebook, really for the first time ever. It was pretty amazing to be able to start over again and not have the fodder from past attempts and stray papers and ideas clogging things up."