Josh Rouse Josh Rouse… Waltzing hat wielder

Interview: Josh Rouse

Published on June 17th, 2013 | Jonny Abrams and Neil Currie

Josh Rouse’s lush new album The Happiness Waltz merited a four-quail review as glowing as its own deceptively intricate Americana, so we fired him over some questions – not for the first time, we might add – to find out more about it…

The Happiness Waltz feels like a return to the production style of albums like Nashville, Subtitulo and Country Mouse, with lush arrangements and pedal steel. Was this deliberate?

It’s a set of immediate, slightly melancholic pop songs that got the Brad Jones treatment (beautiful arrangements) and that was deliberate.

There is a Steely Dan feel to “City People, City Things”, reminiscent of “BarryTown”. Were they an influence?

Yes, I’m a big fan of Steely Dan, great songs and grooves.

How much of the album’s instrumentation did you handle yourself? Who else was involved?

Just guitar and arranging with Brad, I believe the album credits are in the artwork.

What happened to The Long Vacations? Will you play with them again?

They are the band on this record.

You used Pledge Music to raise money for the recording of the album. How was the experience and is this a route you will use again?

I actually used Pledge to raise money to pay my wonderful band for the tour and give them a hotel to sleep in at night. I have my own studio now so I don’t need to much money to record an album.

How is life in Spain – the economy seems to be awful and unemployment is unbelievably high, especially among young people. Has this changed what originally attracted you to the country?

It’s sad to see old, out-of-touch people running a country but that’s the case here. Spain is horrible at creating jobs. However I still like the weather and the people and the food.

It’s ridiculously early to be asking this, granted, but have you given any thought yet to your next project? If so, what can you tell us about it at this stage?

Don’t have any plans at this moment but i’m always working on a song.

What music from 2013 have you been enjoying? Is there anything yet to come out that you’re particularly looking forward to?

Neil Halstead’s record was enjoyable, we played a show together a few years back.

Josh Rouse, thank you.

The Happiness Waltz is out now on Yep Roc Records.

You can buy The Happiness Waltz on iTunes and on Amazon.

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About the Authors

Editor of Rocksucker and the website's founder, Jonny is passionate about the music he listens to, both good and bad, as well as interviewing his favourite musicians.


Part-time musician Neil Currie is based in Connecticut, United States.