Band of The Week 41
Birds Over Arkansas formed in 2011 when Scott Haskitt, Laura Hartshorn, and John Mondick discovered that the product of their musical experimentations was greater than the sum of its parts. Although they reside in different states (Scott and Laura live in New Haven, CT, while John lives in Philadelphia, PA), they continued their long distance collaboration after realizing that the spark of creativity and collaboration they had forged could not be duplicated by working on their own or with other musicians.
Drawing from influences such as Peter Gabriel, Ryan Adams, Frank Zappa, Tom Petty, Pink Floyd, and Yes, their music infuses heartfelt lyrics, infectious melodies, and complex rhythmic structures to create compelling and moving songs that are the antithesis of today’s manufactured pop music.
“In the writing process, we started realizing that we had these really fun initial ideas, often kind of quirky and unorthodox, and then we would just edit and massage them down until they sounded like everything else. It was really frustrating, sort of killing our own ideas. So we started doing the opposite; shining a light on the quirky bits from sessions and junking the normal sounding stuff. Eventually, those left turns started to make sense in their own way”.
Their music has already garnered critical acclaim from fellow musicians, music industry professionals, and fans across the United States:
We live in strange times where being in a band implies a whole lot more than just music. Birds Over Arkansas are a rare group who prove great playing, great sounds, great songs and great people still can be all you need for truly great music. Brian McTear / Weathervane Music, Miner Street Recordings
Birds Over Arkansas have a great song here…”Lay Down Tonight”. What a beautifully performed vocal, and wonderful backing track. I’m singing along and loving it!!!…Being a huge Beatle fan, I instantly fell in love with the vibe of this song. It reminds me so much of a John Lennon creation. BRAVO !!!! Joe Vitale / CSN, Eagles, Dan Fogelberg, Peter Frampton
Sweet and melodic, with complex orchestrations and tightly layered harmonies, listening to Birds Over Arkansas is like sitting down to a delicious meal. You’ll savor every moment. Music & Mayhem
They released their debut EP, “Behind The Lights”, on June 30, 2014. “Behind The Lights” features four new tracks that highlight BOA’s ability to integrate complex time signatures with singer/songwriter sensibilities.