Interviews BretDH**

Published on April 5th, 2013 | by Ballard Lesemann


The Punch List with Bret Mosley

Metronome Charleston‘s weekly Punch List puts local musicians on the spot with a questionnaire that touches on music, venues, gear, records, vices, and more. This week, nomadic dobro player and songwriter Bret Mosley responds to the questionnaire.

1. What is your favorite local hang (hangout/bar/venue) and why? 

“In the Charleston area, its Awendaw Green because the people come to relax and take it all in rather than to be seen. Whole Foods in Mt. Pleasant is a close second because my organic, whole-living dorkery is unmatched.”

2. You know you’ve played an excellent show when…

“There is complete silence for a moment at the end of the last song.”

3. What was the last show you attended that really got you fired up in a good or bad way?

“Sitting in with [Athens, Ga.’based band] Bloodkin at their Pour House CD Release Show on March 9 was a treat. The guys are so nice to me, and being a part of the guitar onslaught they create is like charging across a field on a big, fast horse.”


Bret Mosley (photo by James Mahon)

4. Define your musical style in exactly 10 words.

“I love poetry, melody, and groove much more than football.”

5. What’s your theme song?

“The Anusara yoga invocation, because … just read the translation:

‘Om Namah Shivaya Gurave / Saccidananda Murtaye/ Nisprapancaya Shantaya / Niralambaya Tejase / Om’

‘I open my heart to the power of Grace / That lives in us as goodness / That never is absent and radiates peace / And lights the way to transformation / Om’

6. Gear-wise, what’s is your irreplaceable baby?

“My ’52 DeArmond single-coil pickup on my dobro.”

7. What’s the most overplayed album in your collection?

“Van Morrison’s Astral Weeks because it feeds what I call my ‘attention surplus disorder.’ On my recent 45-show/17-state/12,000-mile coast-to-coast tour, I listened to nothing but the song ‘Madame George’ for three weeks.”

8. When was the last time you were genuinely star-struck? How so?

“It was two weeks ago when I met Kipp Shives at the Danielle Howle & Josh Roberts birthday show celebration. I recently heard his music for the first time and was so blown away, Then, when I was suddenly introduced to Kipp, I alternated between stammering and gushing. I think I made him somewhat uncomfortable. No ‘this artist meets that artist’ comparisons apply. He is a consummately original in his expression.”

9. What’s your poison?


10. In 10 years, I will be…

“In a place and time and position, the nature of which I have no inkling whatsoever.”

Bret Mosley is a longtime songwriter, singer, dobro player, and collaborator. Formerly based in Brooklyn, the Alpine, Texas native calls Charleston one of his main bases these days. Mosley’s 2007 debut album Light & Blood explores an array of folk, blues, and Americana styles. He likes that a fan once referred to his styles as, “Hank Williams Sr.-meets-the Ohio Players.”

Mosley has been playing around the Southeast with Awendaw-based songstress Danielle Howle (sometimes under the nickname “The Mearnts”).

The duo performs two Home Team BBQ shows this weekend — on Sullivan’s Island on Sun. April 7 from 7-10 pm. and at West Ashley on Tues. April 9 at 9 p.m. Both shows are free.

Mosley will return from a road trip later this month for solo shows at Rita’s on Folly Beach on Fri. April 26, at the Sippin’ Saturdays series at Irvin-House Vinyard on Wadmalaw Island on Sat. April 27, and a late-evening gig at Smoky Oak Taproom on James Island on Sat. April 27.

Visit for more.

Top photo of Bret Mosley and Danielle Howle by Stephanie Smith.




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About the Author

Ballard Lesemann

is a musician and writer. Born and raised in Charleston, S.C., he spent years playing in bands and working for Flagpole Magazine in the bustling music town of Athens, Ga. He returned to his hometown and served more than seven years as the Charleston City Paper's music editor. He's better at drumming than he is at playing guitar.

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