Spotlight On: Joe Pug

Image courtesy of Joe Pug

It just wouldn’t be right to let 2010 go by without giving mention to Joe Pug. In 2010, Pug released his debut album Messenger, toured extensively throughout the USA, Canada, The UK, and even played a handful of shows in Australia last month that I for one didn’t even hear about until today.

Pug’s lyrically intense brand of song writing has transformed his life from University drop-out, to one of the most widely revered songwriters of our generation. Pug‘s obvious musical aptitude is not the only reason for his fast-tracked success; it seems Pug is also a master businessman. In order to get his music to audiences, Pug offers to send out 2-track sampler CDs to anybody who wants to share his music with their friends. He will send as many as you need, and even cover the postage. Fans appreciate the generosity, introduce as many like-minded music fans to Pug’s music as they can, and from there his fan-base grows exponentially. This is of course a gamble. It all relies on the customer being satisfied with the product, which has proven to be the case.

Pug’s 2007 EP Nation of Heat was met by unanimous critical acclaim, and with good reason. Pug’s songwriting reflects a man wise beyond his years, and lost deep in thought. Perhaps this stems from his years studying as a playwright at the University of North Carolina, or even the years spent on the road living poor and honing his craft. Whatever it is we have to thank for the products of Joe Pug’s mind, one gets the feeling that he gained it by not taking the easy road.

Messenger, Pug’s debut album has taken me longer to get into than his previous EP, for which my love was immediate. But make no mistake; this is an album of true workmanship.

Country of Origin: USA
Sounds Like: Bob Dylan, The Tallest Man On Earth
File Under: Folk, Country


  1. BondiBen said,

    January 2, 2011 at 13:13

    Hey, nice write up… I totally missed this guy when he was in Aus too… Always flying under the radar so glad you have him here for all to see. Thanks for sharing!

  2. January 14, 2011 at 22:06

    […] can over the next year. Woodford is always a stellar line up, Port Fairy is just amazing this year (Joe Pug- enough said), and the Fleurieu Folk Festival is another nice and convenient one for us South […]

  3. January 21, 2011 at 19:29

    […] Image Courtesy of Joe Pug […]

  4. March 21, 2011 at 14:56

    […] Timber & Steel readers would have seen the name ‘Joe Pug’ before, and it seems that music fans that aren’t even particularly traversed in his genre or […]

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