Country Duo Arbor North Takes ‘Red Eye’ for Valley Debut

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Nashville duo Arbor North will make its Mahoning Valley debut Thursday night at Westside Bowl’s main room.

The country act comprised of Canfield native AC Jones and her husband, Michael Boris, will also unveil its new single, “Red Eye,” at the show.

Jones fronted her own country band in the Valley before she and Boris married and launched Arbor North in 2021. Her last local show was at the Canfield Fair that year.

“Red Eye,” an upbeat romp about a long-distance love affair, is powered by horns and features a soaring bridge that’s like a song within a song.

The song goes in a completely different direction from the act’s first single, the ballad ‘You, Me and Jesus.”

It also reflects the couple’s musical tastes.

“With the first song, we stuck to the songwriting formula, to the ‘radio’ sound,” Jones said. For “Red Eye,” Boris’ affinity for R&B – especially Earth Wind and Fire – set the tone.

“It was a chance to have some fun in the writing process and in the studio,” Boris said. “How often do you hear slap bass in country music?”

Modern country always pushes at the boundaries of rock and rap. “Red Eye” bounces into another genre.

“We pushed into ‘funktry,’’ Jones said, inventing a portmanteau word that mashes up funk and country.

“Red Eye” is the latest of four songs Arbor North released in the past year or so; the others are “You, Me and Jesus,” “Would’ve Met You Anyway” and “All of the Right Mistakes.” All four have been combined into a physical package that will be available at Thursday’s show.

Looking ahead, Arbor North plans to keep creating as much new music as time and money will permit.

“We would love to release one song a month ideally, but time and finances make that difficult,” Boris said. “What we do put out, we want to be of the highest quality.”

Boris, a native of upstate New York, has been working in Nashville for about a dozen years. While Jones has lived in Music City only for a couple of years, she has been recording and writing there for much longer.

Their strengths and specialties mesh in the songwriting process.

“We each have unique qualities,” Jones said. “I’ve always been on the lyricist side. Michael writes great hooks and arrangements.”

Writing “Red Eye” was an example of their musical teamwork.

“When we write together, it’s a 50-50 prospect – especially compared to other writing sessions I’ve done,” Boris said.

He points out that “Red Eye,” “Would’ve Met You Anyway” and “You, Me and Jesus” were co-written over teleconference sessions during the pandemic.

The couple hashed out the instrumental passage of “Red Eye” between sets at the Canfield Fair performance.

Jones’ original band included her father (guitar), sister (keyboards) and brother-in-law (guitar), plus a couple of “honorary” family members. Most of them will be pressed into duty with Arbor North at Thursday’s show, with Boris’ father playing drums.

Boris himself will play guitars, with Jones on lead vocals.

Fans should expect the same polished production that Jones and her band routinely delivered.

“It will be a fully curated show,” Jones said.

Doors will open at 7 p.m., with opening act Richley Thomas Reto taking the stage at 8 p.m. and Arbor North at 9 p.m. Tickets are $8 (plus fees) in advance; click HERE. Tickets will also be sold at the door.

Pictured at top: Arbor North is Michael Boris and AC Jones.

Copyright 2024 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.