Jesse Langlais of Town Mountain & the importance of music among friends.
Travel 125 miles west from Charlotte and you’re bound to start hearing banjos. Talking to Jesse Langlais(Banjo & vocalist for Town Mountain), evidence of this statement could be found at any given street corner in Asheville.
Asheville is Home.
Asheville was home for Town Mountain even before the group had formed. Jesse explained “We had all lived in Asheville long before Town Mountain was a band.” Town Mountain came to be out of the different open jams around Asheville. The culture of Asheville lended itself to musicians meeting out of these different events. It also fostered the strong sense of collaboration that brought on many new faces and ideas to the band. As Jesse said
Collaboration is a really big part of bluegrass music, with friends jumping in and out of each others bands…
Music Among Friends
With their latest album New Freedom Blues, collaboration was at the forefront of its creation. Friend Caleb Klauder(mandolin & fiddle for the Foghorn Stringband) was at the helm as producer. Miles Miller(drummer for Tyler Childers & Sturgill Simpson) provided the drums for the album, although his impact was more apparent as the band rehearsed a few songs with him. Jesse explains
“Miles came into the studio and we rehearsed a few songs, and it ended up that almost every song on the album had Miles on drums”.
With Miles came Tyler Childers(a good friend of the band) who co-wrote and provided vocals on the last song on the album Down Low. Recording the album in Echo Mountain Studios in Asheville, the band felt perfectly at home experimenting with different ideas.
A Busy Schedule
Town Mountain, like a lot of other working bands, tours heavily. Jesse gave me a ballpark range of over 120 dates a year. I was able to catch them live as they stopped in Charlotte at the Visulite Theatre July 25th. Playing close to a 2 hour set, the energy and tenacity of this band is relentless. Zac Smith(bass) provided a solid foundation for blistering solos courtesy of members Phil Barker & Bobby Britt. Jesse Langlais incorporated a great hand on banjo, while Robert Greer sang the truth in song. The musicianship of this band as a whole can’t be overlooked.
The crowd stayed eager throughout the whole set, getting rowdier as the night progressed, hollering after each solo and song. Town Mountain put on such a flawless show that they even did two songs after the encore.
As far as shows coming up, there is a big one on their minds. Red Rocks, with Tyler Childers. “Were really looking forward to Red Rocks” Jesse said enthusiastically.
125 Miles west of Charlotte is where Town Mountain came to be. They continue to be a band that works hard and plays hard. Hats off to these NC natives for making great music and being even better people. Special thanks to Jesse Langlais for taking the time to talk!