“Hurt Somebody” by Noah Kahan (with Julia Michaels) – A Song Review
Noah Kahan has the courage of a Rudimental and the vocal range and purity of a Ben Howard. When you are a singer/songwriter on the rise, it requires confidence and courage to invite someone holding a Grammy to share the spotlight during a recording of your song. There’s a possibility that you will find yourself in the shadow rather than the direct path of that spotlight. We tip our hats to Noah and to Rudimental, the UK band that generates quality music without help, but still brings in accomplished guest vocalists.
Noah Kahan performed a duet of his song “Hurt Somebody” with Julia Michaels, who experienced a popularity explosion in 2017 with her song “Issues.” Julia is the modern-day Carole King, another artist who wrote numerous commercially successful songs for others before taking the microphone herself (“Writer” and “Tapestry”). Noah and Julia are talent equals during the duet.
In addition to vocals, Noah plays the guitar during “Hurt Somebody.” The impactful (sometimes comedic) video of the song without Julia Michaels is embedded in this post. It briefly shows him with the guitar, using a style that provides a sound which is more percussive than melodic. Coincidently, it creates a Rudimental vibe.
“Hurt Somebody” is the title track of Noah Kahan’s debut EP. Quoting his bio:
"Growing up in Strafford, VT (pop. 1045), small town wonderment led Noah to explore songwriting early on, emulating musical influences like Paul Simon, Ben Howard, and The Lumineers. Kahan writes with thought-provoking realism about self-doubt and fear while highlighting the intricacies of relationships with an unpolished sincerity. That approach, along with head-turning vocals, has brought Noah a long way from Strafford in a very short time. As a senior in high school, Noah’s unique take on the world and his knack for crafting a captivating story attracted the attention of world-class songwriters Dan Wilson (Adele), Scott Harris (Shawn Mendes), Chris DeStefano (Carrie Underwood), among others. Word spread quickly within the songwriting community and it wasn’t long after graduating that Noah decided to defer his college acceptance to pursue a career in music, eventually straying from the 133-acre tree farm he grew up onto work with Lorde & Khalid’s producer Joel Little. The two recorded six songs together including Noah’s debut single, “Young Blood” which entered Spotify’s US Viral Chart at #5, and quickly cracked over 15 million streams."