The sound of old America is lively and youthful again in the hands of innovator and preservationist Pokey LaFarge. With his hair slicked back and a wide smile, Pokey has conjured a modern dustbowl sound, meshing early jazz, string ragtime, country blues and western swing. In straddling numerous forms of traditional American music, he transcends the confines of genre. However, as Pokey is quick to declare, “It’s not retro music. It’s American music that never died.”
Based in St. Louis, Missouri, Pokey’s Midwestern charm and effortless wit warms the hearts of audiences, mainly through his talent as a lyrical storyteller, delivering plot smoothly through his dynamic vocals. One moment he shouts a line and the next he croons above his archtop guitar, backed by an often ornate acoustic five-piece backing band.
At only 30 years old, Pokey’s career has not slowed in momentum since his first release Marmalade (2007). Indeed, his 2013 tour trail consisted of nearly 200 shows, in addition to releasing a new album with Jack White’s Third Man Records.