Mixing the honesty of a veteran singer-songwriter with the raw angst of a garage rocker, Steve Hartsoe plays Americana rock in the style of Tom Petty, Son Volt and Jason Isbell.
Hartsoe’s latest single, “San Pedro Square,” a punchy roots rocker about his neophyte band days in his hometown of San Jose, California, dropped Nov. 15, 2019.
The common thread in Hartsoe’s music is a refreshing honesty. Or, as one writer sees it: "It’s been too long since we’ve heard Americana this genuine. Inspired by Tom Petty and Ryan Adams, Steve Hartsoe is full of melodic spirit and gruff guitar lines. ...” (Milk Crater).
“San Pedro Square” features Hartsoe, who now lives in Raleigh, North Carolina, on vocals and guitars, son Eli Hartsoe on drums and Chris Carbone, the Hartsoes’ bandmate in their alt-rock band London Down, on bass.
Kevin McNoldy (Dave Matthews, Mary Chapin Carpenter) mixed and mastered “San Pedro Square” at Cphonic Mastering in Raleigh, North Carolina.
McNoldy also mixed and mastered Hartsoe’s most recent indie album, “The Big Fix-Deluxe Edition” (released December 2017).
Hartsoe honed his musical skills fronting London Down in the San Francisco area in the 1980s and '90s. The band released two indie albums and repeatedly toured the West Coast, opening for artists including Mudhoney, The Tragically Hip and Chris Isaak.
London Down reunited in Nashville to record a new album in August 2018. The 13-song indie effort, "Gnashville," reached the top 50 in college radio that fall.
“Steve Hartsoe is able to wrest the deepest roots of Americana to deliver material that has at its core the key elements of rock ‘n’ roll and blues-rock, giving it a slightly retro-feel and a more global appeal than is normally the case with the genre.” — Emerging Indie Bands, London
"Steve Hartsoe sings with the conviction of a nomad bleeding his heart dry, performing for anyone from the side of a boxcar." — Richard Murray, POW Magazine, San Francisco