Joey Dosik Shares his 'Inside Voice' With The World

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From the first listen of Joey Dosik’s LP, Inside Voice, to the lighthearted conversation we had over the phone on a sunny winter day, his ability to open up — and his intense desire to understand and be understood — were put on full display. “I guess with music, I feel less afraid to be vulnerable than I am as a human,” he explained as we talked about the creative process behind his lushly produced, soulful music. “I spend a lot of time trying to make something good, to be better, or to just be like, you know what? This is my truth. It’s a weird balance.”

Following a knee injury that left him sidelined right before the release of the early version of Inside Voice, Joey found himself inspired to start another project: the Game Winner EP. “It was sort of like this basketball music therapy concept album,” the sports enthusiast and former basketball star said. “The biggest hardship ended up being the blessing, because, in the middle of making the record, I made the EP, and then I came back to the record after that and finished it, and made it better,” he laughed.

“It takes a lot to just take that leap of faith,” he went on to say. “The record is just a collection of songs that were born out of what I was going through at the time. The record is personal. I’m writing about love, normal day-to-day things, or concepts, just ideas that tickled my brain.” Those concepts — love, empathy, a commitment to standing together when things get rough — are not only an overarching theme throughout Inside Voice, but take precedence in Joey’s life as well. When discussing the state of the world and the people trying their best to live in it every day, he became impassioned as he expressed his belief in the goodness of mankind — and music’s ability to heal and cross the great divide.

“I feel like we’ve all had the experience of music making us feel good. We use music like we use food, or at least I do, and I think that anything that has that kind of power should be celebrated and used as much as possible, especially now that there’s so much pain that people feel,” he said. “I think it’s so good to be around people of a different generation, of a different gender, people of a different thought process, political belief, all of those things. It’s so good to be around that and to be exposed to that, and also to be exposed to the humanity behind somebody, and not just get caught up in our differences. It’s like, hear out those difference, but also just be a human being.” 

“It’s important in this day and age, because people are so divided that you look at the beliefs of someone else and either agree or disagree. But in the end, it’s like, how can we be empathetic toward each other, and relate to each other on a basic human level,” he went on to say.

So he used his music to do what he couldn’t: extend a welcoming hand to someone he may never meet, and connect with others using a tool with an unmatched power to unify, empathize, and inspire. “My goal is for it to be a real, living thing, and not just a caricature of music itself. I want it to be something people can interact with. I want people to understand what I’m saying, and I think that can have an impact, because how can you have a conversation with someone if they don’t understand what you’re saying?” His deep connection to others is displayed profoundly in “Grandma Song,” the song at the center of Inside Voice, where he sings about embracing the difference people have and loving each other through them. “The song is about growing up with my grandmother, who was Polish and from the ‘old country,’ as they say, and being around somebody who was doing all of these things that were kinda really weird to a young boy from LA, but still being enveloped in my grandmother’s love. I think it’s sort of the best of both worlds, to be around something not of this world.”

Growing up in Los Angeles with lifelong exposure to a variety of music is what has sparked Joey’s work. His enthusiasm for music is overwhelming, but even the most enthusiastic artists get burned out. Not him, though. When I asked what keeps him going — because writing and releasing an EP and an LP in a year is a feat that few have attempted, much less achieved, with the heart and warmth woven throughout Game Winner and Inside Voice— his answer was immediate. “Joy,” he said. “Joy keeps me going.”

It’s a rare commodity these days, but Joey Dosik has it in abundance. Lucky for us, he shared it with the world on Inside Voice.

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