Ian Moore

Ian Moore
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“The journey is the destination.” While this is a good mantra for remembering to live your life in the present moment, it could also go a long way toward explaining the career path of Seattle-based troubadour Ian Moore. Texas native Moore first made a name for himself in Austin's ibrant roots-rock scene in the early ‘90s, gaining national attention for his self-titled debut on Capricorn Records. While the album established him as a heavyweight guitar player, Moore eschewed the role of rock guitar hero on his next release, Modernday Folklore, recorded with Mark Howard in Daniel Lanois’ studio. On Modernday Folklore, Moore asserted his growing sensibilites as a singer-songwriter; the album was subsequently chosen as “one of the best moments in contemporary art in 1996’ by Dave Hickey in Art America magazine. But Moore's follow-up album so confused Capricorn that the label dropped him. Refusing to see this as a set back, Moore took advantage of his newfound freedom to redefine just who he is and what it is that he does. And what exactly is “it”? “I don’t know what 'it' is,” Moore admitted to one reviewer. “Stevie Wonder encapsulates some of it, but a lot of my music isn’t soul-oriented. I consider it Southern Gothic, like Flannery O’Connor; that whole creepy feeling with lots of shades and subtleties. It includes soul, gospel and Appalachian stuff, plus a lot of Celtic and Indian music. I don’t fuckin’ know, man.” Put the question to him these days and he laughingly tosses out the term “Goth-spel.” Surprisingly, its fits: Moore's music is passionate and full of yearning; it aches for answers but only finds more questions and, occasionally, some temporary salvation. His songs, like those of similar artists such as Grant Lee Phillips and Wilco, manage to be at once classic and modern. It's not the kind of music, however, that lends itself to easy categorization. But what’s in a label, anyway? Ask any of Moore’s current fans what it is that draws them to him and the response is unilateral: his voice, his songs, his presence. Seattle weekly The Stranger dubbed Moore “a stellar songwriter blessed with an absolutely stunning voice.” Another magazine went so faras to proclaim that “Moore has moved foursquare into the circle of guitarist-songwriters like (Richard) Thompson, Mayfield, Hendrix and Buckley, where pop isn’t a dirty word and where music comes straight from the soul.” Luminaria, Moore’s first release for Yep Roc Records, is a richly varied, deeply soulful affair that should free him once and for all from any lingering misperceptions or misconceptions of who he is as an artist. The quiet strains of “What I’ve Done” both open and set the tone for the album, the music winding its way through the speakers in much the same way as the protagonist winds his way from destination to destination – and through life in general. It's only fitting that the recording of Luminaria was just as much a journey as everything else in Moore’s life -- when you're a musician who's constantly on the road, you don’t have the luxury of taking weeks (or sometimes even days) to sit in a studio and record. Bits of Luminaria had their beginning in friends’ houses, on days off, or on the fly. Serendipity occasionally stepped in -- paths crossed, drum parts were recorded here and there, old friends in faraway places appeared to make their contribution. Moore's journey literally became the destination. “It’s a very natural record made by friends,” he explains. “I made this album with pretty much everyone who’s played with me over the past six or seven years. It started in Austin with the Screen Door guys, then I took it to Seattle, and then on the road. The drums on ‘Caroline’ were recorded with Chris Searles in Tucson – I was on the road, stopped by KXCI for an interview and he happened to be in town with his girlfriend so we recorded on the spot. “Paul Brainard and Matt Southworth both came out to my home studio on Vashon to record,” he continues. “‘Caroline’ was started on tour at a friend’s apartment in San Francisco while they were still sleeping – hence the quiet first couple of voices. ‘Abilene’ was recorded with Jeff Saltzman, and quite a bit of the record was done in Portland with Paul and Jay Clarke from The Standard and Dolorean.”. But while life on the road takes its toll (even when it helps shape great albums), it also makes for great live shows. As a performer, Moore consistently manages to reduce packed houses to stunned silence through the sheer power of his voice, his songwriting and the unadulterated emotions he conveys. He's an artist who's built a reputation through his live shows, one convert at a time. It’s doubtful that anyone would have been able to predict so much subtlety and depth from an artist that started his career as a Texas guitar hotshot. That is, except for Moore himself, an artist who's willing to trust where his spirit takes him and to allow us to accompany him on that journey.
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01/10/2011 - Ian Moore's "El Sonido Nuevo" Set For March 8 Release - Read More
12/03/2007 - Blues guitarists Ian Moore, Tyler Dow Bryant desire to be different  - Read More
10/06/2007 - Fans enjoy evolution of Texas songwriter - Read More
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Average Rating : 4.5              Total Reviews: 8

Ian Moore  07/25/2009            
Regardless of what you think about the albums being made by Moore today, I still miss the Capricorn Years. When he sang "All I want is to keep you satisfied", he wasn't referring to his fans of that time period. I am not satisfied but I do wish him all the best. Thanks for the memories...I guess.
Ian Moore  05/30/2006            
'The Voice' by Doc Rock
'Luminaria'...intimate reflections on having lived and lost ... the open hearted acceptance of loss and transformation as part of a deeper realm of experience on the level of soul.With 'Luminaria' as his medium, Ian Moore, the artist/musician/composer, paints a vivid and moving mosaic, carrying us from the insular plaintive wail of 'What I've Done',through the pleading and longing musings of 'Kangaroo Lake', and ultimately to the uplifting and psychedelic tinged cacophany of hope and renewal jarring us back to our 'senses' with 'New Day'(no filler in sight). This is highly literate and introspective music, a kind of 'white man's blues' with integrity, designed to carry those who dare make 'the journey out and in' to a deeper level of understanding of themselves and of their connection to the ebb and flow of the greater web of life. This is the work of a man becoming comfortable in his own skin while reaching for his full stride as a compassionate and ultimately vulnerable artist; one who has lived,loved and lost in a rich glow, were the 'ego' has begun it's long slow fade into the shadows.There is a powerful synergy at work here. Each song contained in this opus is a reflection of the greater cosmic message in microcosm, as expressed in the human dynamic, any one of which, when understood completely, relects back a clear perception of the whole. Does that mean that by experiencing and understanding 'Luminaria' on a deep level we can hope to gain 'enlightenment'? Well, I'm afraid not. But it can certainly serve as an uplifting step along the path in its own subtle way, an inspiration to trust the process and to tread a bit more lightly when faced with the ups and downs and the ins and outs and the good and bad of life; a gentle reminder that it all comes back to us in the end. I would suggest multiple listenings of 'Luminaria', regardless of first impression, especially for the emotionally numb.If it does'nt resonate at first, don't be frustrated; with time and a little patience I'm certain you will be richly rewarded, even if it takes years to sink in! This music is a new genre for most, rooted more in emotional awareness than in technical analysis, trendiness or purely physical texturing; actually echoing an ancient perennial philosophy which beckons us to look within first. Oddly enough while writing this review, two songs from the distant past came back to mind. From Stevie Wonder comes the words, 'I was made to love her, from a world above us'; and then from the great Jerry Butler comes, 'so take it easy on yourself, cause breakin' up is so very hard to do'. Wow, I think that's a great part of what Ian Moore meant to convey with 'Luminaria'.... We all come here to travel the earth for a short time during which we are called upon to love with all our heart, mind and soul which we must express through our physical togetherness and closeness with other individuals in order to find life's fulfillment. But when these precious gifts from 'above' end or begin to fall apart(breakup,divoce,lawsuit, betrayal,war,death), which they all must in this world, be gentle with ourselves and others, lest we become another sad statistic. I suspect that unlike many of his contemporaries, Ian Moore is determined not to tread the tragic path of over self-indulgence in personal pathos. There is always a 'New Day'.
Ian Moore  12/21/2005            
josh mcfarland
the best one man show on the planet!
Ian Moore  10/30/2004            
[email protected]
Those who already know Moore may only know him from his previous incarnation as a guitar-slinging Texan. Those who haven't heard his earlier work will have a hard time connecting his earlier blues-rock background to his current folk-rock inflected alt.country sound. His latest betrays few hints of his past, filling out this disc (his sixth) with superb pop melodies and adventurous arrangements that layer harmony and echo on meters that effortlessly flow from pop 4/4 to dreamy waltz-time interludes. Touch-points like Jeff Buckley's introspective folk and Wilco's pop constructs are fleshed out by loping tempos, as well as pedal steel that is more atmosphere than twang. The 7+ minute "Caroline" is a lush Badfinger-like construct that alternates between concise melodic pop and trippy psychedelia. Having recorded this album over many months with a revolving set of musicians in several cities and along the road, the songs explore a wide range of styles, including the shuffling country soul of "April," the jazzy blues of "Abilene," and the otherworldly Theramin-inspired "Ordinary People." It's a heady collection of sophisticated sounds that mixes primary elements with shadings of trip-hop. When Moore cranks up the rock 'n' roll electricity, as he does for "New Day," it's more a wall-of-buzz (with Penny Lane-ish trumpets) than Texas blues. Even the rootsy dobro rant "Bastard" sounds as though it were processed through a bit of Tom Waits' alley-way sensibility. Moore's lyrics are similarly sophisticated, mixing allegory with word play for poetic effect, but without destroying the narratives or characters. His sketch of Antarctic explorer Sir Robert Scott's dramatically portrays the mariner's failed attempt to reach the South Pole before anyone else (he was beaten by Norwegian Roald Amundsen), and his death on the return journey. Perhaps the album's greatest achievement is how effortlessly it combines its breadth of style and depth of experimentation. Rather than sounding constructed, it sounds like an organic whole that tumbled out of Moore's imagination. There's a great deal of craft in the unusual, detailed arrangements, but like the lyrics, singing and playing, it's in service of fashioning a superbly coherent result from often disparate ingredients. 4-1/2 stars, if allowed fractional ratings.
Ian Moore  08/23/2004            
Jay Pop
Ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce you to the next great singer/songwriter, Ian Moore. Combine Stevie Wonder with Jackson Browne, add eclectic music with soulful folk rootsy rock, mix that together and you get Ian's latest album Luminaria. A must purchase for anyone who can hear and feel. As an independent performer, you can catch him all over the U.S. in an incredible live, intimate setting. Luminaria is another wonderful chapter in the revolving door of Ian's music. We can only hope that he keeps following his heart.
Ian Moore  03/31/2004            
Gary Overstreet
After hearing "How Does It Feel" from Ian's debut CD, and "Muddy Jesus" from this CD...I rushed out to buy "Modernday Folklore". It actually took me a while to warm up to this one, but once I did I could not stop listening...and have been a diehard Ian Moore fan ever since. But as good as his recorded music is, it just cannot compare to what an amazing live performer he is. After seeing over 50 shows now (both full band and acoustic), I can definitely say that Ian Moore is truly one of the most unique and talented singers/musicians working today.
Ian Moore  07/31/2001            
Eric Dean
Hello everyone. I saw Ian Moore last night at the San Marcos River Pub and Grill along with over 600 other folks. I believe that he broke the attendance record at the outdoor event. It was an amazing show. Ian did two long solo acoustic sets and hung around to sign autographs and take photos with his fans before taking a swim in the river. Check out "Green Grass" for rootsy eclectic stuff, "...and All the Colors" for profound siger sogwriter rock stuff and his latest "Via Satellite" for one of the best live performances captured on CD. Peace...E.D.
Ian Moore  05/15/2001            
I know that the majority of people on this site listen to roots type artists. Well Ian exemplifies roots rock, soul with a little blues and world flavor. He is an amazing songwriter and singer...oh and he's o.k. on the guitar too. All of you folks that are getting into to Cross Canadian and like your stuff a little rockin' check out Ian. He'll be in Oklahoma City 6/2 @ the Blue Door & Norman 6/1 @ the Red Dirt Cafe for two solo acoustic shows. Wear a diaper...peace.
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