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With 'Fun Times,' Josh Fudge Says Goodbye To His Adolescence

 Josh Fudge
Josh Fudge
Becoming a young adult right now — it's a very, very crazy time to be alive.
Josh Fudge

This is Songwriters & Tour Riders, a music podcast from KOSU and Oklahoma State University and hosted by Matthew Viriyapah.

Josh Fudge was only 18 years old when he released his first album, Fun Times, at the beginning of this year. Juxtaposing sweet melodies with melancholic lyrics, the album captures his experience transitioning into adulthood.

Listen above to hear more about what it was like graduating in a pandemic, how his plans for the future have changed because of it, and what it was like putting out his first studio album.

On graduating from high school and transitioning in a pandemic

So the plan initially was — I made it into Belmont University's songwriting program, and I was going to go over there.

But it all ended up going online, and there's like no way I can function in online school. I had to do it for the end of my senior year, and it was awful. I could not focus. I didn't learn a thing.

So I'm taking a gap year. I really just spent it getting more involved in the whole music scene and making as much content as possible while working a full-time job.

When the pandemic happened, I had a lot more free time obviously and a lot of emotions, and I feel like that's really what causes the best art to happen. I felt so passionately and so strongly about everything that was happening, it became so easy to write.

I really like to think of Fun Times as one big goodbye. It's a goodbye to people I used to know. It's a goodbye to relationships that I had go downhill. Fun Times serves as one big goodbye to the entire juvenile period of my life.

I poured all of those emotions. Whether it's heartbreak or nostalgia or uncertainty about the future, I kind of just poured all of that into the record.

Every song has a different story, but it kind of has this whole arc of me learning how to let go — me coming to terms with a lot of things.

On nostalgia

I personally feel like nostalgia is one of the most potent emotions that a human being can feel. I think it's only second to love.

Becoming a young adult right now — it's a very, very crazy time to be alive. This is a very rude awakening in a kind of sense, so it's definitely really easy to miss when the world just seemed a little bit simpler.

I think Gen Z in particular kind of grew up on a very strange kind of cusp. Technology has become so much more prevalent in everyone's lives, and I think Gen Z grew up right on the tail end of that.

I have a few younger siblings, and all of their friends are getting iPhones in like the 3rd grade. And that was completely unheard of like for us. There was a simpler kind of time in Gen Z's minds. And I think that's maybe why it's so easy for us to be nostalgic. Because we really kind of witnessed the tail end of a massive change in the world.

On deciding fully on music

I was also looking into a degree in engineering just because of that kind of fear. Because it is like, 'what if I don't make it? What if I'm not good enough?'

I really set and mulled that over. And I realized, I've been doing music since I was four. I have loved it since I was four — all my free time — it's what I do. I love music more deeply than I've loved anything in my entire life. There is no doubt in mind that I'm going to be a musician someday. That it's what I am going to do.

I love it too much to not do it.

And although music is the more unsure option... it's the option that I know I want. It's the option that I love. And it feels right in me.

Josh Fudge now has a record deal and is making music full time. He's working on his next album and his latest single is "FEEL LIKE."

Music featured in this episode:

  1. Josh Fudge - FEEL LIKE
  2. Josh Fudge - Summer Something
  3. Josh Fudge - Dinner Alone
  4. Josh Fudge - When She's Gone
  5. Still Woozy - Goodie Bag
  6. SPORTS - The Look
  7. Josh Fudge - Hit My Line
  8. Josh Fudge - New Thing
  9. Josh Fudge - Second Date
  10. Tyler Sexton - You & I
  11. Josh Fudge - Losing Time
  12. Josh Fudge - Sweet Love

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Matthew Viriyapah is KOSU's production assistant and host of the music podcast Songwriters & Tour Riders.
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