Modern stories with old souls and the Carter Family canon. Appalachian mystery rants at breakneck speed, full-bodied gospel and blues, and a touch of Mid-Century swing.
Jon Hogan and Maria Moss call it scorch folk, their shorthand for a blend of original ballads, fast-driving vintage corkers, early country waltzes, and covers that scramble time with pop lyrics set to old-time music. Part Western folk-punk, part 1930s dancehall, it shimmers with cascades of twangy guitar and Jon Hogan’s heartbreak vocals, or snaps with mad minor-key mountain harmonies and Mother Maybelle-style fingerpicking. It sounds like Ireland, West Texas, North Mississippi and East Tennessee, and an imaginary place where songs by Tom Waits, Townes Van Zandt, Amy Winehouse, Nirvana, Prince, Warren Zevon, Steve Earl and Billy Joel are rearranged by the likes of Hank Williams, Jimmie Rodgers, Bob Wills, Geeshie Wiley, and A.P. Carter.
All at once, it’s uplifting and dark, kinetic, historical, modal, primitive, modern, and haunting.
In 2018 Jon and Maria were selected as Facilitating Songwriters/Artists in Residence in a national music engagement and research initiative funded by the National Endowment for the Arts. Throughout the year, they work with nonprofit foundations to bring music performance, music history, and the craft of songwriting to classrooms and communities. They also give talks with music on the enduring power and mystery of the Carter Family and other old-time artists.
Hogan & Moss and the Old Weird America typically play more than 250 shows and teaching events annually, touring throughout Texas, the Southwest, Rockies states and Midwest. (They are planning a Southeast tour in 2019.) Their shows range from high-energy full-band dance celebrations with the Old Weird America on bass, drums, mandolin and fiddle, to house-concert duo and trio performances with upright bass. In 2016 they toured for the first time in Ireland, Belgium and the Netherlands.
The Old Weird America band takes its name from Greil Marcus’ classic work of American music criticism, an inspirational and indispensable codex to a music that nonetheless remains a mystery, and forever shall.
“A first-rate show.”Jeanne Wilkinson
“The hardest working duo in Texas.”Joe Nick Patoski
“Exhilarating, heartbreaking, wild, epic, microcosmic, toe-tapping, head-nodding, gut busting, soul searching…They made us live an extra year of our lives in a couple of hours.”Russell Cushman
“…mixes Hogan’s originals with vintage tunes…about as seamlessly as even Gillian Welch and David Rawlings could.”Chris Gray
“….strumming maniacs, possessed by old-time music. It’s as though if you touched them they might electrocute you.”