Deep in the heart of Cherokee Country, in the foothills of the Ozark Mountains, the small town of Tahlequah, Oklahoma is giving rise to a dynamic and eclectic cure for the common country music rut. Led by Dr. John Fell (a general practitioner by day and manically expressive singer-songwriter and acoustic guitarist by night) and artist/musician, electric & acoustic guitarist and mandolin master Kyle Brown, DocFell&Co has been kickin’ the dust up around these parts since the early 2010s, channeling the masters (Woody Guthrie, Hank Williams, Johnny Cash) to create a fusion of traditional country, hillbilly, bluegrass, Americana, red dirt, folk and gospel funk.
In this interview spotlight, I chat with Doc Fell & co. about challenges, motivations, recent projects and more.
Full Q&A along with links and music below.
Where are you from and what style of music do you create? (In your own words, not necessarily in marketing terms or by popular genre classifications.)
Our music primary focuses on story telling. A good song take the listener on a journey to a place or time in the their mind. I feel like the melody gives power to the words but the style is subsequent to what the words are telling the song to become. Our style is more classic country inspired by honesty and earnest emotion.
What led you down this path of music and what motivates you to keep going?
When i discovered the gift of song writing it became apparent that sharing my songs was the only way to continue progressing as a writer. Once i discovered the comfort and joy my music brought to people the fire was permanently lit. Although there are moments of frustration in the music world, success or failure does not dictate my ability to continue writing and playing my music.
How is this new release different than previous ones? Were you trying to accomplish anything specific?
the new album is our second release as we built on our experience at the recording process and as a song writer. The idea of having a concept for the entire album revolving a love story was one special inspiration. Listening to the album from beginning to the end loosely tells the story. Our goal of course was to reach new and larger audience. Although we have not reached the pinnacle of success yet, Willie Nelson says if you fail at something long enough you become a legend.
Name one or two challenges you face as an indie musician in this oversaturated, digital music age? How has technology helped you (since we know it does help)?
the market is oversaturated. Everyone wants to be heard and access to the digital world is easily available to the entire world. The key for anyone wanting to be more successful is to create better songs and never stop hustling. If you make your self big enough the world will have no choice but to acknowledge you.
Where is the best place to connect with you online and discover more music?