This month we’re shining the spotlight on Eight Dollar Mountain, a Southern Oregon Bluegrass quintet with high energy instrumentation, hard-driving rhythms, and sweet harmonies.
We caught up with Phil Johnson to learn more about Eight Dollar Mountains’ music, upcoming projects, and what they like most about AudioTheme and the Nowell WordPress Theme.
AT: What’s your story? How did Eight Dollar Mountain get together?
PJ: We all officially met for the first time at a bluegrass jam. Mark, our dobro player had known all of us individually and invited us all out to the same jam to play together. Looking back, we’re fairly certain his plan all along was for us to start a band, and it worked. The first time we played together, all our eyes opened wide and we knew we had something special together. Basically, after playing a few songs, we were already trying to figure out a band name and book some gigs. That was 5 years ago and we’ve never looked back.
AT:How would you describe the music that you play?
PJ:We like to describe it as ‘Southern Oregon Bluegrass’, hard-driving rhythms, high energy instrumentation and sweet harmonies. We definitely nod to the traditions and forefathers of bluegrass, but also add some modern West Coast flavor and love to get the crowd dancing and keep it that way. Together we have written a lot of original material that captures each band members’ style and contributions which combine to create our unique sound.
AT:What’s your most popular/fan favorite song? Where can we hear it?
PJ:That’s a tough question, our most recent album, ‘Tied to the Tracks’, (released in 2014) has some great new songs on it. It was recorded with Vince Herman of Leftover Salmon as producer and we couldn’t be happier with his input and how each song came out with it’s own unique feel. From that album, Old High Way, came out with a lot of character and our banjoist Stuart Green did a great job with the lyrics. You can listen to songs from our new album on our website (courtesy of the AudioTheme plugin =).
As far as older songs go, one of the crowd favorites has to be 35 Miles. It was written in the earlier stages of the band and we made a goofy music video you can watch our on youtube channel.
AT:What’s your favorite thing about your AudioTheme website or the AudioTheme plugin?
PJ:The AudioTheme plugin makes it so easy! We easily link our songs, gigs, band info and the image slider looks great. We actually have a web developer in the band, but rather than recreating the wheel, AudioTheme had all the features we wanted, so we went for it.
AT:Is there anything new or exciting that you can share with us? Anything fans can look forward to?
PJ:We had a bit of transition last year. Our original bass player of 4 years got married and decided to step down from the band. It was bittersweet; we’re very happy for him, but he is missed. Luckily we found a replacement bass player who fits the mold and vibe of our band perfectly! He is a great player and singer; and, with a new bandmate comes fresh energy and excitement even to our older tunes. We’re excited to play up and down the West Coast as much as we can this year and collaborate on more original songwriting. We’re all great friends and enjoy each others’ company, we play music because we love it. In the end we’re just looking for more music and more fun.
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