with special guest Joe Pug!
Event tags: Pappy's, Country, Pioneertown, Pappy And Harriet's, Honky Tonk, Texas, Joe Ely, Joe Pug, Barrelhouse, Austin
JOE ELY with special guest JOE PUG! $15
March 17, 2013
$15 General Admission and Non-Refundable Tickets are available at ticketweb.com by clicking this link below
sings of distance, about rivers and ranches, of smoldering passions and
sad laments, of faraway longing and unrequited love."
else romances the road. Joe Ely lives it. Call him what you want - a
wandering minstrel, gypsy cowboy, visionary song poet, or houserocker on
fire - whatever he is, Ely's covered a lot of ground in his time. He
really has ridden the rails (in a circus train, no less), thumbed his
way across the country, hopped boats to exotic foreign lands, and ridden
horses across the prairie. All part of the relentless quest for
revelation that only a journey can satisfy.
sort of restless yearnings come naturally to a boy from Lubbock, Texas,
where the flat dusty landscape, endless sky and vast horizons have
inspired several generations of young creative types to fill up all that
empty space with music, as Buddy Holly did, as did Waylon Jennings, and
Roy Orbison all the way to the current Lubbock Mob consisting of Ely
and his compadres Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Butch Hancock, and Terry Allen.
Like them, Joe Ely has proved to himself before he proved to a growing
number of faithful that when it comes to the mystical process of
writing, singing, and performing music, there's no pretending or holding
back. Where he comes from, you put your emotions ofn the line each and
upbringing led Joe Ely to roam the earth and preach the gospel of the
Roadhouse, extolling the virtues of the nowhere-else-but-Texas pressure
cooker enviornment where hard core country and the rawest kind of rock
and roll collide on the dancefloor every Saturday night.
first milestone was a band called the Flatlanders, formed in Lubbock
more than twenty years ago by Ely, Hancock and Gilmore. Their visionary
melding of country, rock, and fold immediately pegged them as three
singer- songwriters who were ahead of their time and way too
experimental for Nashville.
came the Joe Ely Band, Joe's own ensemble who once again mixed country
and rock elements into something new and completely different, proving
to anyone that heard them that an accordion or pedal steel guitar really
could pack the same sonic punch as an electric guitar. In England, the
Panhandle poets and his pickers were embraced by the Clash, the standard
bearers of the nascent punk movement, who might not have shared the
same cultural values as the West Texans, but who certainly knew
integrity when they heard it.
then, Ely has gained the respect of his friends and his peers,
including such kindred spirits as Bruce Springsteen, who contributes
vocals on his latest album, along with old friend Jimmie Dale Gilmore,
and new friend Raul Malo of the Mavericks.
qualities grabbed their attention, Joe Ely remains a Texas origional.
In Austin, where he now lives and works, a body of work that spans
thirteen albums and his willingness to put it all on the line each and
every night have rightfully accorded him status akin to royalty.
no matter how virtuous those qualities and associations seem in
retrospect, and no matter how illustrious his performing and recording
career may be, all the accomplishments and accolades suddenly seem like
mere preludes that have been building up to Letter to Laredo. On this
collections of songs, Joe Ely simply sets out to demonstrate what all
the fuss is about.
sings of distance, about rivers and ranches, of smoldering passions and
sad laments, of faraway longing and unrequited love. He sings of
journeys that take him from the High Plains of West Texas to dark and
mysterious flamenco bars in Spanish Andalusia, where Arab, African, and
European influences commingle. And more than once he can be seen and
heard chasing hearts and souls south across the Rio Grande.
voice is that of a man who speaks fluently the patois of honky tonks
and jook joints, who can hold an audience around a campfire riveted
untill the break of dawn, or inspire a crowd of thousands to kick up
their bootheels in a two-step or a stomp. It's a voice that can converse
with a pistolero as directly as it conveys intimacy to a lover, or
articulates that high lonesome feeling known to everyone who has ever
hurt. So pull up a chair, cut a rug, or hit the highway. Listener's
choice. The songs that Joe Ely sings are the stuff that make anyone's
journey something worth remembering.
It’s been 4 years since Joe Pug quit his day job as a carpenter, but
his remarkable rise in the music world has been driven by the same
hard-worn work ethic. His path has been an unusual one, which has often
challenged the traditional rulebook of the music industry, but even now
as he prepares to release his second album “The Great Despiser”, it has
always been characterized by one prevailing idea: Find a way.
After dropping out of college the day before he was to start his
senior year, he moved to Chicago and picked up the guitar he hadn’t
played since his teenage years. The songs that he wrote would
eventually become the “Nation of Heat EP”, a self-released gem that has
gone on to sell over 20,000 copies. It was in those heady early days
that the idea was born for a unique promotional strategy that would
launch Pug into the national consciousness. In an increasingly
fragmented and disorganized music industry, it was harder and harder for
a new artist to break through the white noise. With no publicist and
no access to radio, Pug decided to recruit his fans to help spread the
word. He took his most popular songs, printed up CDs, and offered to
send them free of charge to anyone who wanted to share his music with
their friends. And share they did. “People requested 2 copies, 5
copies, 10 copies, 20 copies. We’d send them all. We even covered the
postage,” he remembers. The impact was immediate and undeniable.
“Suddenly we’d be rolling into towns that we’d never been before and
there would be crowds there who knew the songs. Our fans essentially
became like a radio station for us, and they still are. ” While
skyrocketing demand eventually forced a switch over to a digital
version, the offer remains to this day at joepugmusic.com, and has been
downloaded over 30,000 times.
The momentum attracted the attention of Nashville indie label
Lightning Rod Records, who signed Pug and released his full-length debut
“Messenger” in 2010. The album was met with critical acclaim, with
Paste Magazine saying “Unless your surname is Dylan, Waits, Ritter or
Prine, you could face-palm yourself to death trying to pen songs half as
inspired as the 10 tracks on Joe Pug’s debut full-length.” It featured
plenty of the literate acoustic tracks that he was best known for, but
an electric remake of “Speak Plainly Diana”, which was done acoustically
on his first EP, provided some foreshadowing of direction he would
later head. He toured incessantly behind the album, which included
appearances at Lollapalooza, Bonnaroo, and the Newport Folk Fest as well
as tours with Josh Ritter and Levon Helm. A higher profile did nothing
to dull his independent streak, though. He experimented extensively
with ticketing his shows directly with very low service fees, and often
none at all. “Our guiding principle has always been: if we take care of
the fans, they’ll take care of us.”
In 2011 Pug was lured to Austin, Texas by its storied songwriting
tradition. “Chicago is a very difficult place to leave, especially when
it has supported my music to the level that it has. But I found myself
enamored with the contributions that Texas has made to the American
songbook and I had to go see where it was born.” The first album that
he wrote there, ironically, would be recorded in Chicago at Engine
Recording Studio with producer Brian Deck (Modest Mouse, Iron&
Wine, Califone, etc). In addition to Pug, “The Great Despiser” features
various acclaimed musicians, including Sam Kassirer (Josh Ritter,
Langhorne Slim) on piano, organ and marimba, Califone’s Jim Becker on
slide guitar, banjo and violin, as well as backing vocals from The Hold
Steady’s Craig Finn on the album’s title track. “With this album, we
finally created arrangements that can stand shoulder to shoulder with
the lyrics. It was a real privilege to work with musicians who were
able to further the songs’ narratives with their instruments. The songs
were written in the same way but were realized with sharper color.”
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