Any artist with musical diversity is always been someone who I have loved. There are so many talented artists who can adapt to what people like— Country, Blues, Rock — it doesn’t matter, they make it work. One artist in particular with that strength is Dallas singer/songwriter/guitarist Jason Elmore.
Elmore, who was voted ‘Best Blues’ 2012 in the Dallas Observer Music Awards, has a knack of turning heads with his crowd-pleasing guitar licks and vocals. Jason brings together a wide variety of music with his performances that definitely combine blues, rock, soul, and vintage country. Regardless if he’s playing a full band or acoustic gig, fans of all genres of music instantly become Jason Elmore fans.
“Jason Elmore & Hoodoo Witch,” which was formed in 2008, is a high-energy trio rounded out by Brandon Katona on bass and Mike Talbot on drums and can often be found touring all over the USA, Canada, and Europe; They have shared the stage with the likes of Jimmie Vaughan, Tab Benoit, Monte Montgomery, Bugs Henderson, Tommy Castro, and Peter Tork (Monkees), amongst others. The band released their debut CD “Upside Your Head” in 2010 to rave reviews.
Let’s meet the man Jason Elmore.
1 – Tell us a little bit about who you are?
I’m a Dallas-based guitarist/singer/songwriter, originally from Denison, Texas. I moved to the Metroplex about 4 years ago and I’m currently playing every weekend around the DFW area when I’m not touring nationally. I tour about every 3 months, all over the USA and Canada and sometimes Belgium. I front the band ‘Jason Elmore & Hoodoo Witch.’
2 – How did you decide to give music a try?
I’ve always known that music was what I’m supposed to be doing here in this life. I’ve been immersed and obsessed with various styles of American music since I was about 8 years old. I gave up working for someone else in 2008 and decided to pursue a career in music full-time.
3 – Who were your musical influences growing up?
Too many to name.Among them are: Elvis Presley, Rory Gallagher, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimi Hendrix, Bugs Henderson, Joe Satriani, Eric Johnson, Black Sabbath, Pantera, and Cream.
4 – Can you tell the fans about your musical style?
I call it ‘American Music.’ My style is firmly rooted in the blues, but I like to incorporate various elements of popular American music, such as rock, swing, classic country, and 60s soul. I try to infuse pieces of those art forms into my personal style of blues playing and writing.
5 – How do you like to interact do with your fans?
I enjoy interacting with them in-person at my shows. It really means a lot when fans approach me and ask questions and/or interact with me in any way. I enjoy discussing my gear and my influences with anyone who will listen. I’m very thankful to have people who enjoy what I do and care enough to come and approach me with conversation.
6 – What was the first song you ever learned?
I knew all the lyrics to all of Elvis’s songs by the time I was 10. I learned lots of pieces of songs when I first picked up guitar, but I think the first song I learned all the way through was ‘Stairway to Heaven’.
7 – Can you tell fans what they should expect when attending one of your shows?
You can expect a high-energy show with lots of original material and various styles of music at my shows. We try to keep the audience entertained with little down time and lots of energetic material. We strive to give 110% at every chance we have to share our music in a live setting.
8 – What is the one song that you love to perform live?
I enjoy playing all of the songs that I’ve written. I don’t really have a favorite. That’s like asking which one of my Jason at HSN 2012 1children do I like the best. LOL
9 – Do you prefer to play small venues or bigger venues?
I like the money that comes with larger venues, but I really enjoy connecting with an appreciative audience in a smaller, more intimate venue when possible. I like the closeness and intimacy that comes with being close to the audience.
10 – If you could perform with anyone right now, who would it be?
I actually am very blessed to have shared the stage with many legendary acts. However, in the end my favorite people to perform with are my bandmates, Brandon Katona and Mike Talbot. They put me in a very comfortable musical place where I can express myself to the best of my abilities.
11 – What is your process for picking songs that may go on an album?
Usually I’ll record all new original material and put it all on an album. I’ve done this with my two previous releases (2010’s ‘Upside Your Head’ and 2013’s ‘Tell You What’) and have been pleased with the results, which were strong, award-winning albums comprised of different styles of music. However, with my next album I will pick only material that is blues/soul oriented. I have several country and rock tunes that will make it to another album someday, but for the upcoming one I hope to make it more blues-friendly and leave out any pure rock or country tunes.
12 – Do you write your own material?
I do. When performing, I do about 80% original and 20% cover material.
13 – What inspires you to write a song?
I keep a catalog of unique phrases and potential song titles. When I hear something, either in conversation or on TV or whatever, I’ll write it down, and then return to it later when I’m working on lyrics. I draw inspiration from my own experiences in life as well as other people’s experiences and situations that I observe.
14 – If you could record one song what would it be?
I’m not terribly interested in recording other people’s material. If I could record one song, it would be the one that I haven’t written yet, that has the perfect lyrics, chords, melody, and feel. I’ve yet to write it. LOL
15 – When making your first album, did you try to pattern it after any particular album you have heard and blend it with your own style?
Not particularly. I was fortunate to have my mentor Jim Suhler produce my first record and guide me through the whole process. I suppose I was influenced to compose an album similar to ZZ Top’s ‘Rio Grande Mud.’ Lots of meaty, Texas blues and rock.
16 – Is there one artist that you are a current fan of?
Lately I’ve been heavy into Dwight Yoakam & The Mavericks.
17 – Are you signed exclusively with anyone now?
No. I am on the Underworld Records label, but it is strictly for distribution to online outlets and radio play. I don’t have a ‘record deal,’ as most people understand it. I enjoy owning 100% of my recordings and being responsible for my own bookings and endeavors. I would consider signing with the right folks though. The scene is changing from what it used to be. More and more artists are independent now and the idea of ‘signing with a major record label’ is becoming less and less enticing for many musicians.
18 – What would you say is the biggest highlight of your career thus far?
Probably travelling to Belgium in 2013 and doing a small tour over there. Those folks really appreciate our music.
19 – Where can fans go to find out more about you?
JasonElmore.net is my official website. Other than that, I have a band page on Facebook and Reverbnation, though I’m not a big fan of Reverbnation. It is a business tool though, so I use it as much as I can without having to pay.
20 – Where can fans purchase your music?
At ANY show, we sell our music and t-shirts during the breaks, right off the stage. Other than that, you can find both of my albums at Amazon and iTunes.
21 – What is on the horizon for you?
I hope to continue to grow as a singer, guitarist, and songwriter. I am currently writing and developing material for Jason Cadillacmy next album, which I will likely release in late 2015.
I have a special show coming up on December 13 at Theater 166 in Carollton, Texas. I will be hiring an organ player and a pedal-steel player for this unique show. We will do a lot of country and soul material, as well as a couple of Elvis Christmas tunes.
After that, I just hope to continue to share my music with the world and to tour new and exciting places that I haven’t been to before. I hope to be able to do this as long as I’m alive. It’s the thing that I enjoy the most.