Recently, I had the absolute pleasure of having a conversation with Angela Perley (of Angela Perley & the Howlin’ Moons), before her performance at the Marietta Brewing Company in Marietta. I asked her a bit about music and the MOV and whatnot, and here’s what she said:
Michelle: You’re in Columbus. What brought you to Marietta and the Marietta Brewing Company, and what keeps you coming back?
Angela: We’ve been playing at Marietta Brewing Company for the last couple of years. We were pulled in at first because we love brewery venues and we love MBC beer. We were turned onto their beer at the Pawpaw Festival years ago and through Casa Cantina in Athens, Ohio – I think.
M: Speaking of (music)-what drew you to the musical saw? And are there any other quirky bits of musical fun you and your band enjoy that others might find unique/intriguing?
A: I loved the sound of the saw and was determined to learn it. That’s probably about as quirky as we get right now.
M: What do you enjoy most about performing in front of a crowd? Any favorite fan/supporter interactions that helped you realize you were on the right path (of being musicians)?
A: I love the energy of a live crowd and how it impacts the band’s energy at shows. When people start singing along to the songs is when the experience really becomes surreal. Making a connection emotionally with others through music is very special and we are very thankful for that.
M: I love that you support other artists and their successes, and I’m excited to see you perform at Nelsonville Music Festival, this coming June. Is there anyone in particular that you’re super excited about performing at the festival – anyone in your local community, that you’ve met out and about/on tour, anyone at all – that you wish more people knew about?
A: Oh man I am totally geeking out about all the bands on the lineup. I am particularly excited to see Charles Bradley because I have been spinning his records a lot and just heard his new one that comes out in April and can’t wait to see him live. I also love Nikki Lane and think everyone should have her on their radar this year because she is an amazing songwriter and performer. Pumped that our Columbus friends Mojoflo are going to be there as well – going to be a killer fest!
M: You’re award winning songwriters – who in the band writes the songs – or does that rotate a bit?
A: I write all the lyrics to the songs and the basic composition. The band furthers the composition and really are what brings the songs to life.
M: Any tips for anyone who wants to write their own songs – biting the bullet and writing their first song, how to find the “hook” formula, anything that’s a helpful thing to keep in mind? Any “writer’s block” exercises you’ve found especially fun/helpful?
A: I would say main tip is just to write as much as possible. Takes a while to develop your songwriting groove/voice so the key is to just jump in there and get started.
M: What’s your ideal writing environment?
A: Ideal is alone and late at night.
M: And if you had to make a mixtape for road trips and touring, what might be on it?
A: Lots of 60s/70s rock and soul music.
This makes so much sense, to me. Listening to Angela Perley & the Howlin’ Moons’ music is like taking a trip back in time to the music of the 60s and 70s, but bringing it back to modern day to meet your modern music friends. Their Facebook bio mentions that their music is where “the influences of David Gilmour, Tom Petty, Led Zeppelin and Nebula all intersect.” Angela’s voice is a great blend of vulnerability and strength, and the music that surrounds and intersects it is strong and haunting, yet fun and light, just when you need it to be. They’re a delight to watch, and I’m looking forward to their next “local” performance in June.
Their newest album, Homemade Vision, regularly finds its way to my CD player on road trips, and brings me back to their awesome show at the MBC, last month. As shared from their Facebook page: “Armed with electric guitars, swooning vocals, and songs that split the difference between rock & roll and dreamy psychedelia, Angela Perley & the Howlin’ Moons pack the biggest punch of their career with Homemade Vision…Inspired by love, heartbreak, and everything in between, Homemade Vision is a battle cry from a band that’s spent years fighting the good fight, carving out their own brand of atmospheric, aggressive Americana along the way.”
Angela Perley & the Howlin’ Moons on the road, consists of:
Angela Perley (Vocals, Backing Vocals, Electric Guitar and Musical Saw),
Chris Connor (Lead Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar and Backing Vocals)
Billy Zehnal (Bass)
and a rotation of drummers who round out their sound.