Last week, I finished an article on singer-songwriter Zoe Muth and her band The Lost High Rollers. I’ve become a huge admirer of her poetry, which you can hear in the video. I can’t stop listening to this song, no matter how hard I try.
The article, which will be published in the June issue of Acoustic Guitar, was particularly hard to write because I could only communicate with Zoe via email (she was touring in Europe), and articles for that publication have to be meticulous. You have to insert a lot of information about playing specifics, as well as what guitars, strings, and even picks they use. It’s a surprising amount of work, especially when a lot of the artists who are just starting out, aren’t (or can’t be) gear heads. In this case, Zoe wasn’t even sure what model her guitar was, which for me, speaks to her love for the songwriting craft.
“I play a Takamine from the 70s and I’m not sure what the model is,” she told me via email when she was on tour in Ireland. “I bought it from Dave, the guitarist. One of these days when I finally get a credit card I keep telling myself I’ll buy something a little bit nicer, but for now it does the trick. I’m sure that’s not what the readers want to hear, but really I’m interested in the song more than the kind of guitar it’s played on.”
At the tender age of 31, Zoe Muth has just completed a successful European tour with her band. She’s also played with Kinky Friedman, Joe Eaglesmith, and Dave Alvin. All of this after becoming enamored with folk music in high school, getting a Yamaha for her 15th birthday, and teaching herself to play by going through the Beatles songbooks. It’s a familiar story for anyone who’s found their passion early in life, but Zoe, despite her shy demeanor, put herself out there and is now touring the globe.
She writes on her website (http://www.zoemuth.com): “I have tried so hard in the past few years to really make this work: to make a record (that fortunately some people like) and promote it, even if it means playing in Los Angeles to 5 people.”
For me, there’s nothing more inspiring than someone who is slowly finding fame because of their endless devotion to doing what they love, despite everything else.