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Paul Burch / Bio

Over a decade of critically acclaimed albums, Paul Burch’s original and riveting mix of rock and roll, blues and honky tonk has been described by USA Today as “music that sounds thoroughly modern but completely unlike contemporary country” and Entertainment Weekly has called him "a modern day Jimmie Rodgers." Both in his recordings and his live shows, Burch is frequently backed by his long time group, the WPA Ballclub, and together they put surprise improvisational twists into Burch’s original compositions that feature baritone guitar, fiddle, Hawaiian steel, Latin American rhythms, atmospheric tape loops and feedback. The combination makes for vibrant, haunting music that seems unmoored to time or continent or what UK’s Mojo magazine described as "the sound of a celestial jukebox heard from around the corner."

In 2012, Bloodshot Records released Great Chicago Fire, Burch’s new collaboration with the Waco Brothers which includes the title song composed by Burch and Jon Langford, painter and founder of the Mekons--“the world’s oldest punk rock band.”

Arriving in Nashville in the early 90's, PB's marathon nightly shows at Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge helped to revitalize Nashville's downtown live music scene on Lower Broadway. Rock journalist Chet Flippo covered the scene for Billboard and hailed Burch’s debut, Pan American Flash, as “extraordinary, establishing Burch as a leader in marrying country's roots tradition with a modern sensibility.” Pan American Flash placed #5 in the Top 10 Country Records of the 90’s by the editors of Amazon.com. While at Tootsie's, Burch formed his backing group, the WPA Ballclub, which will celebrate their 20th anniversary in 2014.

Along with his eight solo albums, PB has also recorded with stylists in every musical genre including Mark Knopfler, Ralph Stanley, Vassar Clements, Lambchop, Exene Cervenka of X, Beverly Knight, and Vic Chesnutt, and joined Jeff Tweedy, Elvis Costello, and George Jones on the GRAMMY nominated comeback by Charlie Louvin. Burch also served as music consultant to the PBS film “The Appalachians" and his album Last of My Kind, was a companion to Tony Earley's NY Times bestseller Jim the Boy.

Peter Guralnick, author of biographies of Elvis Presley (Last Train to Memphis & Careless Love) and Sam Cooke (Dream Boogie) says: "I'm a Paul Burch fan. How could I not be? How many other contemporary artists have forged a body of work of such cleverness and coherence, careful craftsmanship and white-hot heat, with all the zeal of the most dedicated student and all the passion of a true original? His music never fails to achieve its purpose, what Sun Records founder Sam Phillips has deemed the unequivocal purpose of every kind of music: to lift up, to deepen, to intensify the spirit of audience and musicians alike."

General Info

Band Members
Paul Burch & the WPA Ball Club
Artist Name
Paul Burch
Profile Page

Contact Info

Nashville, TN
John Smith