For a band that regularly plays 250 shows a year, there’s nothing like coming back home.
‘One To Grow On,’ the eighth studio album from Mike and the Moonpies, is a musical homecoming that returns the group to its roots as a workingman’s country band. Layered with Telecaster twang, honky tonk harmonies and lyrics that highlight the Everyman’s struggle to remain optimistic during a 9 to 5 world, this is organic music for dancehalls and car stereos — a soundtrack for the mid-week blues, shot through with weekend energy.
“I wanted to create a record you could crank loudly in your truck on Friday afternoon at quitting time,” says frontman Mike Harmeier, who wrote ‘One To Grow On’ in his backyard studio on the outskirts of Austin. “To do that, I developed a narrative and a central character. It’s a guy who’s working hard to make ends meet, all while living in the moment and hoping to stay appreciative of the things he has. A guy who takes pride in what he does but is still searching for a balance in his life. There are a lot of similarities between him and me.”
For more than a decade, Harmeier and his band of hard touring road warriors — pedal steel player Zach Moulton, guitarist Catlin Rutherford, bassist Omar Oyoque and drummer Kyle Ponder — have traveled far beyond their Austin homeland, flying the flag for homegrown Texas music in more than a dozen countries. They’ve become global ambassadors of a blue collar country sound, striking a balance between timeless influences and cool, contemporary appeal. Along the way, they’ve stretched their legs, following the breakthrough success of 2018’s Steak Night at the Prairie Rose with records like 2019’s Cheap Silver & Solid Country Gold (an album inspired by the classic countrypolitan hits of the early 1970s, recorded at Abbey Road Studios with help from the London Symphony Orchestra) and 2020’s Touch of You: The Lost Songs of Gary Stewart (a collection of nine unreleased songs written by the honkytonk hero).