Wednesday, May 13, 2015

In-Studio Performance: Joe Pug

Singer-songwriter Joe Pug dropped by the station on April 30th, ten days after his 31st birthday and just a few weeks after the release of his third album, Windfall. Pug had visited the station previously while promoting 2012's The Great Despiser, a tour that nearly burnt him out on making music altogether. After kicking the session off with "Bright Beginnings", the first track from the new record, he went into detail about how he almost quit music entirely. He had been touring non-stop and by the end of the tour he was "really low on [him]self, low on music" and wanted to take a step  back in order to gain perspective as he "needed to have joy while making music". (Though let's not forget his gorgeous rendition of Bruce Springsteen's "Downbound Train" on Dead Man's Town A Tribute To Born In The USA from 2014.)

"If Still It Can't Be Windfall the whole way through.
Found"was the second tune he played, which he wrote on an out-of-tune piano he found on Craig's List. He found a section of the site dedicated to people with pianos they are trying to get rid of--if someone can get it out of their house then it's theirs. The track is particularly powerful and Pug strategically placed it last on the album. "People don't listen to full albums anymore", and he wanted to make sure people listened to

Windfall was recorded at Shangri-La studios, with a simpler approach to songwriting and recording than Pug's previous efforts. He also cites more contemporary influences on this album as well--M. Ward, Josh Ritter and Ryan Adams among others, and finishing out the performance with "Burn And Shine".

Joe Pug will be supporting Brandon Flowers in the UK next month, as well as performing at the Green River Festival on July 12th, and Newport Folk on July 25th (Friday). More information can be found at

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