Live Music: Elliot Humphries

Elliott Humphries is the guy in the glasses strumming an acoustic guitar and singing a quiet ballad, as much to himself as to the audience. He’s also the guy perched atop the bar, ripping out a solo on his Fender Telecaster as his group wails across the room.

He recently stepped out on his own after six years as the front man for Be the Moon, a hard-rocking Americana band from Burlington, N.C. Elliott was known for leaving it all on the stage during Be the Moon performances, and he brings that same fervor to his solo work.

The music he makes falls somewhere between the heartache of Jason Isbell and Ryan Adams, the energy of Husker Du and AC/DC, and the passion and compassion of Johnny Cash and Tom Petty. There’s an urgent quaver in his voice, whether he’s singing about lost love, the state of the world, or escaping the limits of small-town life. Elliott writes about the space between hope and heartbreak.