About JR JR
Mindful of making music that is danceable without sacrificing anything in the songwriting department, and with an ear for '60s pop harmonies, JR JR merge folk and electronic elements into breezy, festival-friendly indie pop. Originally named Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. with typical irreverence, they made their full-length debut with It's a Corporate World in 2011. The band introduced their shortened moniker on self-titled third album JR JR in 2015.
The duo of Joshua Epstein (The Silent Years) and Daniel Zott came together in Detroit in 2009. Working out of a basement studio, their early efforts to forge a musically mature yet catchy sound bore fruit in 2010 when, calling themselves Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr., they released their debut EP, Horse Power, on Quite Scientific. They quickly followed it with the EP My Love Is Easy: Remixes, Pt. 1. That same year, the pair was also tapped to do a remix of Moby's "Wait for Me." The resulting buzz from their early releases led to a record deal with Warner Bros., which released a Record Store Day-exclusive EP titled We Almost Lost Detroit in April 2011. The duo's full-length debut, It's a Corporate World, followed on the label that June and spent a week at number 17 on Billboard's Heatseekers Albums chart. In 2013, they returned with an EP, Patterns, before releasing their sophomore full-length, The Speed of Things, later that year. It peaked at number 12 on the same chart.
In 2015, even though they had the blessing of Dale Earnhardt, Jr. himself, to avoid ongoing confusion by fans and seekers of the race car driver, Epstein and Zott decided to change the band's name to simply JR JR. Their first LP under the shortened handle and their third for Warner Bros., JR JR was released that September. It contained the single "Gone," which landed just outside the Top Ten of Billboard's Alternative Songs chart in 2016.
After parting ways with Warner, JR JR started their own label, Love is EZ Records, and self-released the project's fourth long-player in partnership with Secretly Distribution. With the first set of songs written in Detroit in 2016 with touring bandmembers, and the second set consisting mainly of Epstein and Zott, the double-album Invocations/Conversations arrived in 2019. ~ Marcy Donelson & Gregory Heaney