John Prine signee Arlo McKinley can’t escape Ohio on “Die Midwestern”
The late John Prine was by all accounts an incredibly kind-hearted man, but he was not easily impressed. So his decision to sign Arlo McKinley, an Ohio-born 40-year-old singer-songwriter still yet to release his debut album, to his own Oh Boy Records earlier this year is a sign of just how striking McKinley's songs can be.
At 40, Arlo McKinley Finds a Champion in John Prine’s Oh Boy Records
Last year, singer-songwriter Arlo McKinley played a set at the intimate Nashville venue the High Watt. A couple of very important things happened that evening. For one, the Cincinnati-based performer landed his current booking agent out of it. Secondly, among those in attendance was Jody Whelan, Director of Operations for Oh Boy Records, whom McKinley had gotten to know after playing an AmericanaFest event for the label a year earlier.
Arlo McKinley releases 'Die Midwestern,' a must-hear album from John Prine's Oh Boy Records
On the 10-track "Die Midwestern," out now via Nashville independent label Oh Boy Records, McKinley sings about a bittersweet way of living through songs of chemical dependency, untamed restlessness and unspoken heartache — experiences in the rust belt that defined him beyond any geographic boundary.