The Barefoot Movement comes to town

The Barefoot Movement take their shoes off. Pictured from left are Alex Conerly on the guitar, Noah Wall on the fiddle, Tommy Norris on mandolin and Katie Blomarz on bass.

Vocalist and fiddle player Noah Wall of The Barefoot Movement called in for an interview from the band’s van as they traveled to a gig in South Carolina on Monday. The temperature on the road from North Carolina was a balmy 69 degrees.

“We’re looking forward to seeing some snow,” she said.

The band will not be disappointed when they arrive in Pinedale this Thursday. And locals are in for a holiday treat as the band returns to Pinedale to play a show of Christmas classics set to acoustic music. The Pinedale Fine Arts Council sponsored the band’s performance at the Pinedale Auditorium on Dec. 6.

The band has their own unique style, Wall said, although their sound is influenced by acoustic, Americana and root music.

Wall picked up the violin when she was in second grade. She was fortunate to have a good instructor who taught the Suzuki method of classical music along with traditional fiddle music.

“I wasn’t a really dedicated fiddle player until later on, though,” Wall said. “My first love was singing, and in high school I realized I really wanted to do music. So I started to focus on the fiddle more.”

Wall’s taste in music runs the gamut from heavy metal to traditional bluegrass and Americana. Her inspiration comes from a variety of musicians like the bluegrass ensemble The Dillards, known for their appearances on “The Andy Griffith Show,” and Led Zeppelin.

“The Dillards were really good song writers and players,” Wall said. “But Led Zeppelin’s acoustic music really bridged the gap in my head between classic rock and more traditional American music.”

The Barefoot Movement started in Creedmoor, N.C., when Wall met mandolin player Tommy Norris in high school. Wall and Norris ended up in different colleges, but they met up to play music whenever they could, and kept the band alive.

After graduating, Wall and Norris met guitarist Alex Conerly who lived in Nashville, Tenn. Nashville’s live music scene launched the careers of many famous artists from Johnny Cash to the Kings of Leon, so the trio decided to make the city their new home. A fourth member, bassist Katie Blomarz, joined the band in Nashville.

The Barefoot Movement’s first record came out in 2011. In addition to doing acoustic covers to a wide range of songs, the group writes their own music. Wall is hesitant to pin their style to one particular type of music.

“It’s hard to put a genre title on our music,” she said. “We basically try to write really catchy songs that we can play acoustic music to.”

Each member of the band enhances the sound by bringing four very different musical backgrounds to the table. Wall’s influences are a combination of bluegrass, traditional Americana and heavy metal. Norris loves to compose video game music when he isn’t performing the mandolin with The Barefoot Movement.

Guitarist Conerly grew up in Mississippi, and was influenced by Delta blues and southern rock. Bassist Blomarz studied jazz music.

This year, the band from Tennessee is expanding their tour dates to new destinations like Florida and Colorado.

“This year is the farthest we’ve gone as a band,” said Wall. “It’s really cool going to so many different states.”


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