Brad Fielder is a spirited purveyor of early 20th century sounds.
Hopping genres along the path laid by the pioneers of American roots, he makes folk music for all folks. It's quirky and relevant, old and new fashioned. He writes tunes that tell of relatable characters and places in everyday life. As a one-man-band on the street or with an acoustic ensemble on a festival stage the mission remains the same: Bring the music to the people.
photo: Marissa Johnson
PRESS & REVIEWS
"Welcome to Brad’s world! New Hoyle is less a physical entity than a state of being: “It exists wherever I am,” Brad says candidly and informatively (albeit cryptically) in his liner note, “and you will come to know that place when you listen to these recordings.”
Hoyle, according to Brad’s artist’s narrative, is “not a place lost to time”, but, it turns out, a former name for the tiny burg of Ames in north-west Oklahoma where Brad’s grandparents had made their home.
Brad’s songwriting inclinations towards nostalgia have informed his ostensible placement squarely in that locality, whereas his musical idiom of choice is the template that comfortably straddles early ragtime, 12-bar barrelhouse blues, raggy hokum, cod-oriental and old-timey, as easy as breathing!
The pervasive, aromatic swingalong chugging vibe of the album is infectious; it’s honest ol’ good-time backporch fun, with deliciously oddball lyrics and a quirky instrumental complement to back Brad.
The thoroughly tasty supporting playing (including some cute, delicious – and admirably economic – incidental soloing) comes courtesy of a tight little trio ensemble of trusty cohorts comprising the Norman, Oklahoma, sousaphone maestro Charley Rivers(sic) and Kansas City duo the Matchsellers – aka Julie Bates (fiddle) and Andrew Morris (banjo, mandolin, guitar) – all crammed into a tiny Bristol, Virginia, studio belonging to Jon Atkinson of Bigtone Records.
It was all recorded live direct to mono tape on “vintage audio gear from the golden age of radio”, and each take was the final mix. High on the home-grown immediacy scale, then!
This unpretentious little record is virtually self-recommending to any fan of the genially oddball school. It’s been a real joy to listen to, and with its winning combination of gleeful down-home ambience, fun lyrics and natural, assured musicianship that doesn’t need to shout to proclaim its virtues, it has sure brightened up my week."
David Kidman, Folk London, February-March 2022
"Old-fashioned doesn't necessarily mean outdated, as Brad Fielder continues to prove on his new full-length album, Welcome to New Hoyle. Sure, there are hokey tunes in the bunch that seem like silly nostalgia at first blush, but many of them have strong notes of relevance behind their yokel veneer."
Evan Jarvicks, Oklahoma Gazette, February 9, 2022
"New Hoyle is the mythical backdrop for a cavalcade of zany all-American characters, adventures and corn pone wisdom."
"Self-deprecation, satire, parody and pastiche permeate Welcome to New Hoyle’s dozen tracks..."
Welcome to New Hoyle
Doug Deloach, Songlines, March 2022
"Essentially, wherever Fielder resides now is “New Hoyle.” His remarkable collection of songs channels the past through a 21st century lenses."
"The record has that rare quality of sounding polished, yet spontaneous. Cheerful fun is in a sound caught on the fly."
Doug Hill, Norman Transcript, December 10, 2021
"Fielder’s playing is musical and nuanced, with gorgeous tone and subtle timing and sonority you have to hear in person to appreciate."
"Brad Fielder has been crusading against the grain of modern music trends for quite a while now. His signature brand of lo-fi, blue-collar folk is so rooted in its own early roots that it’s old-fashioned even for the old-fashioned."
Evan Jarvicks, Make Oklahoma Weirder
"From its very inception, folk music like the kind Brad plays has been a way for common people to express their dissatisfaction with their leaders...and to unite each other in that dissatisfaction. With 'Vernacular Songs', Brad welds himself in as a link in that honorable chain."
J Moss, The Modern Folk Music of America
"Brad Fielder is a from-the-ground-up sort of artist. From writing and recording his songs to packaging and distributing physical albums under his own imprint..."
Becky Carman, NewsOK.com
"From songwriting, to photography, to producing videos, Brad pours his proud Okie heritage into everything he does."
Jessica McKim, NakedCityOKC
"The idea or story always comes first. Telling a coherent and cohesive story is most important..."
Brad Fielder uses GHS strings www.ghsstrings.com