HARRY HOCHMAN, American Singer-Songwriter
It’s only fitting that Michigan transplant Harry Hochman landed in Los Angeles, where he would have fit perfectly in its formative Laurel Canyon music scene. His songs mine a deep vein of life experiences, finding beauty, insight and humor in his Motor City beginnings, years of global and psychedelic travels, long distance motorcycling and literally dozens of varied but always dead-end jobs. “I did everything from packing pickles to grinding poured metal castings,” he says, “Wasn’t much to choose from in Michigan at the time, and I’m not sure much has changed.” After motorcycling to California, that life experience turned unexpectedly into an unlikely 30-year career as a successful bankruptcy lawyer in Los Angeles, "Law was the antidote to struggling,” he reflects, “but by the end it was a struggle to take the medicine.” Something had to give, and music was his answer. “Law makes people angry, and music makes them happy. I prefer it this way.”
Harry's music features breezy folk-rock stylings sometimes evocative of another Detroit product, Glen Frey, and seasoned, authentic and ironic lyrics that sometimes bring to mind Jackson Browne, both Laurel Canyon alumni. He cites both as influences, along with Neil Young, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Bob Seger, The Rolling Stones, Peter Gabriel, Jay Ferrar and many others. His quest is to download a life’s lessons learned in songs that are catchy, earthy, relatable and smart. “I’m not trying to hide the ball,” he says. “I just want to get people singing and thinking at the same time.”
In 2022, Harry’s close association with veteran LA musician Chris Murphy drove the creation of Harry's upcoming release of his debut album, INSIDE OUT, which Murphy produced and arranged, and which features his virtuoso violin and mandolin skills. A bevy of top talent supported the effort, including guitarist Nate LaPointe [Cubensis, Bobby Womack], drummer Michael Jerome [Richard Thompson, John Cale]; and bassist Alex Balderston, who’s worked with Beyonce and Selena Gomez. Critical contributions on several tracks were made by Blues Traveler guitarist Chan Kinchla, as well as legendary rock icons Herb Pedersen on vocals and Brian Auger on keyboards. The album was recorded at the Sonic Boom Room in Venice, CA, with expert mixing and additional production by veteran musician and producer Kevin Jarvis.
“Life is simpler than we make it out to be,” he leaves off. “I know it’s cliche, but music really does help us overcome divisions and complications.” Harry hopes his new direction will help him be an agent of such change. “I want to share my songs, to feel them resonate with other people. That’s the goal.”