Ireland Folk Magazine and News
Dusty Stray UK Tour
Dusty Stray has 8 UK dates in his upcoming tour
The man behind Dusty Stray is Jonathan Brown. Born in Taiwan. Grew up in Texas as son of a preacher man. Raised on songs about death and resurrection. Went to college. Discovered vast archive of early American folk music from the 20s and 30s. Began writing his own songs. Moved to Austin where he first performed his music. Travelled with guitar through Central America where he met a Belgian woman and followed her to Europe. Met a Spanish woman. Moved to Barcelona. Formed a bluegrass band, a psychedelic rock band and a freak folk band. Met a Dutch woman. Moved to the Netherlands where he remains today (with the same Dutch woman). Wrote, produced and performed in Amsterdam and at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival “LHO: LEE HARVEY OSWALD The Musical” in 2005. Wrote, recorded and co-produced Dusty Stray´s debut album “Tales Of Misfortune And Woe” released on Dutch indie label Basta Music in 2009 and billed by main Dutch newspaper De Volkskrant as one of the Top Ten Albums Of 2009. He went on to write and perform Dusty Stray´s “Light Years Away“ (Basta 2011, produced by Ken Stringfellow and J.B. Meijers), “Family Album“ (Basta 2013, produced by Kramer) and “A Tree Fell And Other Songs” (Great Waters 2015, also produced by Kramer), all three albums receiving critical praise in Europe and abroad. The fifth album “Estranged” will be released on Great Waters in September 2018. Brown’s many influences include Harry Smith (Anthology Of American Folk Music), writer/illustrator Edward Gorey, The Handsome Family, Bill Callahan, Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy, Leonard Cohen, Neil Young, Gillian Welch, The Velvet Underground, Pavement and The Flaming Lips. When not on stage, he can be found in junk shops and flea markets searching for discarded photographs, 8mm home movies and diverse materials for his artwork which in turn serves as inspiration for the music of Dusty Stray.
Dusty Stray could be described as acoustic-based alternative folk noir. Played on all main stages/venues in the Netherlands supporting such acts as Noah & The Whale, The Be Good Tanyas, Kelley Deal (The Breeders) and Carice van Houten. Has performed around England including live on BBC radio, Bath Fringe Festival, Wimborne Folk Fringe Festival and Shhh Festival. Has toured Germany, Spain and the US and played an official showcase at South By Southwest. Dusty Stray is Texan ex-pat Jonathan Brown (voice, guitar, banjo, ukulele, omnichord, bulbul tarang). Some influences: Leonard Cohen, Bonny “Prince” Billy, Gillian Welch, Bill Calahan, The Handsome Family and Neil Young.
Top Dutch newspaper de Volkskrant listed Dusty Stray’s debut album among the 10 best albums of the year.
Dusty Stray has worked with master producers Ken Stringfellow (REM, The Posies, Big Star) and Kramer (Low, Ween, Galaxie 500) and has had international attention from Simon Raymonde (Bella Union), Tom Robinson (BBC) and Irwin Chusid (WFMU).
“Full of exotic sounds and melodies, a road trip by other lands and other worlds” BBC, FRESH ON THE NET
“It’s all delightfully dark and the trick of allying beautiful and tapalong music to dark words has rarely been performed as well“ AMERICANA.UK
“...he performed a miracle....Brown’s songs about murder and misery sound intimate, almost cozy. The arrangements are ingenious and controlled...beautiful harmony vocals” DE VOLKSKRANT
“Makes the eyes cry not because of sorrow but joy” MAVERICK
“A singer-songwriter with a good eye for the musical heritage of his country, along with a pleasant twist of the mind” OOR
See Dusty Stray perform live: https://www.dustystray.com/shows