Josh Ritter’s new song “Horse No Rider” debuts today

Article Contributed by Sacks and Company | Published on Friday, February 24, 2023

Renowned singer, songwriter, musician, artist and best-selling author Josh Ritter’s new song, “Horse No Rider,” is debuting today. Watch the official music video, created by Rollinos, HERE.

Reflecting on the song, Ritter shares, “The appaloosa horses that are from my corner of the world are the ones I think of. They’re wandering the Camas Prairie, the Palouse. They’re chomping at the base of Steptoe Butte. A wild horse has no rider and is free to gallop. A riderless horse lives life at a careen.”

“Horse No Rider” is the third song unveiled from Ritter’s anticipated new album, Spectral Lines, which will be released April 28 via Thirty Tigers (pre-order here). Produced by Ritter’s longtime collaborator Sam Kassirer (Lake Street Dive, Langhorne Slim), Spectral Lines finds Ritter expanding beyond the bounds of his previous work to create a record both atmospheric and profound. Dedicated to the memory of his mother, Ritter searches for commonality across these ten seamless tracks by exploring life’s most universal ideas—love, devotion and what it means to be connected, to both each other and to ourselves.

Ahead of the release, Ritter recently unveiled album tracks “Sawgrass” and “For Your Soul,” of which Cool Hunting praises, “The melodic first track is driven by hopeful spoken-word lyrics that ultimately yield to Ritter’s signature vocals, while the second track turns the energy up via bold instrumentation and a sing-a-long chorus.” Watch a video for both songs HERE.

One of today’s most thoughtful and prolific voices, Ritter has released ten studio albums to date including 2019’s widely acclaimed, Fever Breaks, of which NPR Music praised, “He remains a hydrant of ideas while embodying an endless capacity for empathy and indignation, often within a single song.” In addition to his work as a musician, Ritter is also a national best-selling author, having released two novels to date: 2011’s Bright’s Passage and 2021’s The Great Glorious Goddamn of It All, for which the film rights have recently been optioned for development. Released to critical attention, Stephen King wrote in The New York Times Book Review that Bright’s Passage “shines with a compressed lyricism that recalls Ray Bradbury in his prime…This is the work of a gifted novelist.”

In celebration of the new record, Ritter and his band, the Royal City Band, will return to the road in May with headline shows at Chicago’s Thalia Hall, Nashville’s historic Ryman Auditorium, Washington, DC’s Lincoln Theatre, Philadelphia’s Keswick Theatre, Boston’s House of Blues and New York’s Beacon Theatre among others. Ritter will also perform a series of solo acoustic shows this spring in the U.S. and Europe. See below for complete itinerary. Full details can be found at

Photo credit: Sam Kassirer

In addition to Ritter (vocals, acoustic guitar, electric guitar) and Kassirer (piano, organ, mellotron, synthesizers, drums), Spectral Lines also features Jocie Adams (clarinet, synthesizers, background vocals), Matt Douglas (woodwinds), Zachariah Hickman (upright bass, electric bass), Rich Hinman (electric guitar, pedal steel), Shane Leonard (drums, percussion, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, bass), Kevin O’Connell (drums, percussion, electric bass, electric guitar) and Dietrich Strause (acoustic guitar, electric guitar).

1. Sawgrass
2. Honey I Do
3. Horse No Rider
4. For Your Soul
5. Black Crown
6. Strong Swimmer
7. Whatever Burns Will Burn
8. Any Way They Come
9. In Fields
10. Someday

March 2—Grand Rapids, MI—St. Cecilia Music Center*
March 3—Cleveland, OH—Music Box Supper Club*
March 4—Buffalo, NY—Asbury Hall*
March 5—Albany, NY—The Egg*
April 11—Oslo, Norway—Belleville*
April 13—Copenhagen, Denmark—Hotel Cecil*
April 14—Stockholm, Sweden—Debaser*
April 15—Berlin, Germany—Prachtwerk*
April 16—Amsterdam, Netherlands—Zonnehuis*
April 19—London, England—St. Pancras Old Church*
April 20—Dublin, Ireland—Liberty Hall Theatre*
May 4—Woodstock, NY—Levon Helm Studios+
May 5—Woodstock, NY—Levon Helm Studios+
May 6—Reading, PA—Miller Center for the Arts+
May 7—Norfolk, VA—Virginia Arts Festival+
May 9—Charlottesville, VA—Jefferson Theater+
May 10—Munhall, PA—Carnegie Music Hall of Homestead+
May 12—Chicago, IL—Thalia Hall+
May 13—Nashville, TN—Ryman Auditorium+
May 14—Atlanta, GA—Variety Theater+
May 16—Durham, NC—Carolina Theatre+
May 17—Washington, DC—Lincoln Theatre+
May 18—Glenside, PA—Keswick Theatre+
May 19—Boston, MA—House of Blues+
May 20—New York, NY—Beacon Theatre+
June 1—Park City, UT—Egyptian Theatre*
June 2—Park City, UT—Egyptian Theatre*
June 3—Park City, UT—Egyptian Theatre*
June 4—Park City, UT—Egyptian Theatre*
June 6—St. Louis, MO—City Winery*
June 7—St. Louis, MO—City Winery*
August 12—Lyons, CO—Rocky Mountain Folks Festival+
*Josh Ritter solo acoustic
+Josh Ritter & the Royal City Band