Carter Hulsey band begins tour in Joplin

Carter Hulsey is a man with a plan, and a band.

Ever since he was young, Hulsey was involved in the local music scene.

“I was in a bunch of different punk bands when I was a kid,” he said. “All my other guys went off to college and I started playing by myself.”

This led Hulsey to work as a solo artist, but over time he has enlisted the help of several other musicians to help him peruse his musical aspirations.

“Slowly I got everybody else to play,” he said. “I got guys who were either out of college or ready to do some music, but I played by myself for a long time, so that’s how I got started.”

The band is currently on tour for their We Move Together and A Note in Your Pocket albums, both released earlier this year. According to percussionist Kevin Deems, the music pulls from many genres.

“Carter listens to a lot of old country,” said percussionist Kevin Deems.  “Isaak listens to a lot of Coldplay type of stuff. Our bass player, Tom, listens to everything. Tof is influenced completely by the Beatles. I just keep the beat. Our music just comes from everywhere.”

Tof Hoglen, keys, has a much more difficult explanation.

 “What our music sounds like?” said Hoglen. “You kind of have to ask people face to face because normally what I ask them when they say, ‘What does your music sound like?’ is, ‘Do you know the actor Billy Crystal?’ And if they say yes I ask them, ‘Have you ever owned a pair of Reeboks?’ And if they say yes to that I say, ‘Now imagine those two things together and you get the sound of Carter Hulsey.'”

Hulsey referred to this as Hoglen’s “textbook answer” ever since he was inducted into the band. Hoglen denies any substance abuse in the creation of this description.

The tour kicked off on Aug. 27 at The Blackthorn. They will be touring across the country, tentatively playing a show in Detroit today. Hulsey said the band has been received well so far.

“The songs do pretty well live,” Hulsey said. “We usually start off our show with a song called “If It Feels,” and that kind of just features everybody with some solos and some vocal harmonies. I’d say our strong suits come out of the gate.”

On Sept. 14 the tour will bring Carter Hulsey to the Beaumont in Kansas City, and to the Bottleneck in Lawrence, Kan., the following day.

The band’s next Joplin show will be at 7 p.m. on Oct. 1 at Momentum 8 Studio.

Other tour information can be found at