John Moreland started writing when he was ten years old, the same year his family moved from Kentucky, to Tulsa, Oklahoma, where he still lives today. He's been slinging songs for more than half his life. He started fronting local punk and hardcore bands in high school. After graduation, he had an epiphany. "I'd just overexposed myself to punk and hardcore to the point that it just didn't do anything for me anymore," he says. The remedy? Americana songwriting. "I was 19 in 2004, and Steve Earle had put out 'The Revolution Starts Now,' and I remember hearing the song 'Rich Man's War' and totally feeling like somebody just punched me in the chest. Over the last half a dozen years or so, John's honesty has stunned us––and stung. As he put hurts we didn’t even realize we had or shared into his songs, we sang along. And we felt better. But there has always been far more to John Moreland than sad songs. Today, his earthbound poetry remains potent, but in addition to his world-weary candor, John's music smolders with gentle wisdom, flashes of wit and joy, and compassion. "I can’t dress myself up and be some folk singer character that I’m not really," John says. "I figured, I can’t dress up these songs and try to sell them that way. All I can do is be me." He returns from the 2020 Folk Festival with a new album, "LP5."
Tonight's special guest is Kentucky songwriter S.G. Goodman, named a new artist you need to know by Rolling Stone.