“For the moment, Joe Pug has it figured out, career if not life: Just write the songs that have to be written, play them for anybody who will listen, tour as if you had no home. Oh, and give your music away. Which isn’t to say he won’t be selling his debut full-length offering, Messenger ( Released 2/16/2010 on Lightning Rod). But free is how he came to make it, more or less. It worked like this, for Joe Pug anyhow: The day before his senior year as a playwright student at the University of North Carolina, he sat down for a cup of coffee and had the clearest thought of his life: I am profoundly unhappy here. Then came the second clearest.”
Joe Pug is a folk singer from Austin, TX who’s latest album “Windfall” is available now. He hits Pittsburgh tonight to more than likely play tunes from it and I want to thank him for taking the time to participate in this edition of First/Last.
The first album you ever bought?
Aerosmith, “Get A Grip”.
Your last album bought?
John Moreland “In The Throes”.
Favorite album of all time?
Maybe Weezer “Pinkerton”.
Least favorite/most disappointing album?
Any album of my own that I did not record within the last year.
First concert attended?
Red Hot Chili Peppers / Silverchair / The Rentals.
Lucinda Williams in Conroe Texas.
Favorite concert ever?
Wilco at the Moody Theater in Austin.
Any thoughts, experiences about Pittsburgh?
Maybe what I’m about to say is going to cost us, but it has to be said. Primanti Brothers is an abomination and it ruined my the inside of my body for a week the last time I tried to ingest it.
Thanks, Joe. No apologies necessary at all on the Primanti’s non-love. Unless I am black-outed loaded, I can’t eat those things either.
Second time seeing Joe and the compliment of a couple other musicians was a welcome addition to his folk tunes. It’s not that I don’t dig solo acoustic, it’s just my preference is having a little variety in the set which Joe pulled off perfectly on this night. His solo songs in the near the end of the show contrasted with the other songs to have an even greater impact. I have also never seen a more earnest guy performing than Joe. Really nice to see him getting a following as evidence with the packed house.
I met Joe at WYEP while he was a fellow audience member during a studio session with The Low Anthem. He was on tour with them as the opener and I kind of surprised him when I wanted to buy his CD. Super cool dude. This was the first time I actually got to hear him play. He didn’t disappoint at all. Although there was some talking in the back of the room, it wasn’t too unexpected due to the sheer amount of people there. Would love to see him in a quieter, more appreciative setting.