Merchants of Moonshine

Merchants of Moonshine

BandCountry

Six musicians from all over America (TX, OH, NE, MO, MI, FL) who met in L.A. and constructed “their” version of a country band. They perform/write tunes in the spirit of country’s past greats while incorporating a sound that invites the modern listener. “REVITALIZED ROOTS COUNTRY WITH A KICK!"

 Share

Biography

While playing funk-rock saxophone in all of the "Pay-to-Play", "High Profile" venues of L.A.'s intense music scene, Chris and Chris decided to slow down, pick up a couple of acoustic guitars, and play some Cash, Willie, and Hank. This was soon after discovering they were both pretty much raised on the stuff, being born in Texas and Ohio. They figured if they were lucky they could hit up a corner bar for a few free beers and maybe pick up on some ladies by offering up a few of these childhood favorites.

Dissatisfied with the country music scene in L.A., they invited some friends to join in, took the name Merchants of Moonshine, and took aim! The first gig was a true hole-in-the-wall, playing for about 20 friends. Eight years, and approximately 600 gigs, later they have become southern California's premiere local Americana/Country band and now split time between L.A. and Nashville. MoM's latest album, "More Than Whisky", broke the top 100 on the Americana Charts and was played regularly on over 150 stations nationwide over the second half of 2012. They have shared the stage with Rodney Crowell, Zac Brown Band, Todd Snider, David Allan Coe, Billy Bob Thornton & the Boxmasters, Wade Hayes, The Blasters, Trisha Yearwood, Hal Ketchum, Little Texas, Asleep at the Wheel, Clint Black, Junior Brown, Will Kimbrough, Bo Bice, Neal McCoy, Jason Boland & The Stragglers, and Phil Vasser. They have performed at several large fairs and rodeos, four of the largest being National Finals Rodeo (Vegas), the L.A. County Fair, the Honda Center, and Angels Stadium. They have played at many of those same "High Profile" Los Angeles venues including Viper Room, The Mint, and Key Club. Awards include South Bay Music Award's 2007 "Country Artist of the Year", Colgate Country Showdown's 2006 "California State Finalist", and they consistently break attendance records at most of the bars/clubs they frequent. They have been featured (interviewed and played) on Shawn Parr's "local spotlight" on KKGO 105.1 GoCountry. "Country Love" written by M.o.M. was used in a feature film entitled "Cut Off" starring Faye Dunaway, Malcolm McDowell, and Kurupt.

They have recently taken their show on the road with a series of mini-tours encompassing the states of Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Nevada, Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Tennessee, Minnesota, Nebraska, Maryland, Michigan, Ohio, Illinois, Iowa, and Wisconsin. On these trips they have played staple venues such as Toby Keith's "I Love This Bar" (Minneapolis/Detroit), Gilley's (Vegas), Museum Club (Flagstaff), Stubb's (Austin), Billy Bob's Texas (Ft. Worth), Adair's Saloon (Dallas) and a Blue Angels air show (Bossier City).

To what to attribute Merchants of Moonshine's quick success depends on who you ask. The fans (a.k.a. Moonshiners) will tell you it is the energetic live show and original songwriting. The band will tell you that it's probably because they are a group of younger musicians exploring and revitalizing an older style of country. Thus, the music appeals to all ages. The younger crowd is relishing it for the first time as "Nashville", via pop country radio, has been backing artists that sound more on the rock-n-roll side of country for the past 20 years. The older crowd is embracing M.o.M.'s modern translation of the country they grew up with. Or maybe it's best described in the two most recurring compliments the band receives:

"I ended up here tonight because of___________ (fill in the blank). Country music isn't my thing, but I love this band!"

"I enjoy watching your band because y'all truly enjoy playing music together. We can see it and feel it. Your energy pulls everyone in!"

Lyrics

My Highway

Written By: Chris Brown

I finally met one the other day
Who sent me back to my old way
Of seeing things the way they really should be
Cause I’ve been chasing love on sight
With what hangs around at the end of a night
Or by which girl might take me home fairly easy

But now I’m counting down the weeks
3-2-1 she’ll drive the streets again
Back toward the ones that she come from
The wild, wild west behind her now she’ll head home

I got her number sitting right beside me
But I grab a pen and I let that girl be
Write about how it’ll only make things harder
I’m doing fine with my time these days
I know that she really can’t stay
God knows I often feel that pull myself

Now I’m counting down each day
10-9-8 she’ll hit the highway
To get back to that Midwest state of mind
I wonder if she knows what she’s doing to mine

Instead of calling I keep writing
To keep from stalling she keeps driving on
And everything, it just find its place
I hear my country music calling
Saturday she’ll start driving on
So drive, drive on to the other side of these states

Well, I’m sure I’ll thank her one day
For throwing caution to my new way
Of not being that guy I know I really could be
Will I quit chasing love on sight
With what hangs around at the end of a night
Or by which girl might take me home although I’m dizzy

But now I’m counting down the weeks
3-2-1 she’ll drive the streets again
Back toward the ones that she come from
The wild, wild west behind her now she’ll head on
The wild, wild west behind her now she’ll head home

Country Love

Written By: Nick Richetta

It’s not once but twice I seen her
In that rusty El Camino
She told me that she’s got to know my name
I said “Now, baby, take it easy
What you got I’m sure will please me
But I ain’t in to playing no crazy games”

Had country love
In the back of my truck
Country Love
Had country love
In the back of my truck
We got stuck in Country Love

It’s a magic, misty evening
Some hot ‘n heavy breathing
I know my baby wants to get it on
Then she leads me out that doorway
She says “man, I like it your way
Come on and give me off road loving…all night long”

Had country love
In the back of my truck
Country Love
Had country love
In the back of my truck
We got stuck in Country Love

Had country love
In the back of my truck
Country Love
In the back of my truck
Doing you know what
We got stuck in Country Love
We got stuck in Country Love

…In the back of my truck

To the Bottle

Written By: Beth Matlock

I sit and listen to the songs we used to play
Lost in a memory of our yesterdays
I don’t know how to let him go
His face it haunts me, I can’t say no

To the bottle beside me, my last request
Make my heart cold, take his taste from my lips
Drown out his voice still whispering to me
I wanna feel nothing, bring some relief to me tonight

I dance alone, barefoot on the floor
Singing to the walls, staring at the door
Waiting for him to come in, take me in his arms
I pour another strong one, I’m drunk with his charms

My body’s weary, my eyes begin to close
The bottle’s almost done, one final dose
I gotta hurry, no, I can’t be late
Moon fades to morning, there’s nothing left to say

To the bottle beside me, my last request
This soul needs saving, this heart needs rest
No longer hurting, I’m finally free
I can see him clearly now
He’s waiting there for me, for me tonight
He’s waiting for me tonight

I'm Not Down

Written By: Chris Hancock

I lie awake at night and close my eyes to sleep one more time
Lord, I’ve been trying
But this body’s restless and I can’t make it sleep, ‘cause even without sun,
A day’s work ain’t done

I was home alone tonight again
So I’m on the road to drink some whiskey with my friends
We’ll close the bar and I’ll be the last one standing, still, ‘cause I’m not down
I run this town

Sometimes I get to feeling like staying home responsibly
But that ain’t me
‘Cause I think about dancing girls, laughs and thrills, and hangin’ out with my friends
I’m gone again

I was home alone tonight again
So I’m on the road to drink some whiskey with my friends
We’ll close the bar and I’ll be the last one standing, still, ‘cause I’m not down
I run this town

I like the night life, that’s what I do, yeah that’s my time
Is that some crime
And I’ll have all the time that I could ever want to rest my head
In jail or dead

I was home alone tonight again
So I’m on the road to drink some whiskey with my friends
We’ll close the bar and I’ll be the last one standing, still, ‘cause I’m not down
I run this town

What I'm Drinkin

Written By: Chris Brown

It was a couple weeks ago at our regular, local saloon
I caught the eye of a girl, the sweetest one in the whole damn room
Well, all my buddies started laughing when I said that she’d be mine
So I ordered up another round and said “If I’m wrong then I’m buying”

That’s how it went for us for the next couple of weeks
I was working too hard to get in with that pretty little honky-tonk treat
But tonight I’m on a roll and I know she’s buying my show
When she whispered in my ear “Man, it’s time we go”
But everything inside me is saying no

I don’t know what I’ve been drinkin’ that’s got me thinkin’ she ain’t the one
When just a couple weeks ago
Yeah, I’d of definitely given her a go
I don’t know what I’ve been drinkin’ that’s got me thinkin’ she ain’t the one
And tonight I know we’re on
But I just can’t get that feeling to turn back on
Is it what I’m drinkin’

She said she’d be right back, she’s gonna give a friend the keys to her car
If I didn’t mind a ride home in the morning, it ain’t really that far
Man, any guy in the bar’d be more than happy to take my place
I should be floored and full of swagger, headin toward the swinging doors
But it ain’t the case

I don’t know what I’ve been drinkin’ that’s got me thinkin’ she ain’t the one
When just a couple weeks ago
Yeah, I’d of definitely given her a go
I don’t know what I’ve been drinkin’ that’s got me thinkin’ she ain’t the one
And tonight I know we’re on
But I just can’t get that feeling to turn back on
Is it what I’m drinkin’

Way to Get Away

Written By: Chris Brown

Tonight you need a man who opens your door
When you dress up real nice, he’ll make you feel adored
Now, we can go fancy or throw a blanket down and dine
Sip expensive red wine or shoot Kentucky’s most fine
But I won’t take my eyes off of you all night

I’ll hold your hand a little bit different than him
When I kiss you girl, you won’t have to pretend
Tonight don’t worry about your finances
You better start thinking about the steps to these dances
And let me be your way to get away

So come with me if you wanna be treated like a lady
Take my hand tonight and make a stand
I’ll treat you like you wish he would
We can run this town then get down to no good
But if you don’t mind girl…I like waking up alone

I know you ain’t looking for a new boyfriend
Just a good ol’ boy to get a little friendly with
Let’s head to that place that he swears he’s gonna take ya
Or I’ll take you somewhere that you’ve never even heard of
But I won’t take my eyes off of you all night

So come with me if you wanna be treated like a lady
Take my hand tonight and make a stand
I’ll treat you like you wish he would
We can run this town then get down to no good
But if you don’t mind girl…I like waking up alone

Bring on the Whiskey

Written By: Melissa Bernadt

I rise with the dawn and head on my way
Stuck in a job I dread more every day
I question is this what’s really meant of me
If I stare in my glass then maybe I’ll see

That this web that I’m weaving will lead to my end
I can’t help but feeling the bottle’s my friend

So bring on the whiskey, the lights and the men
Pick up your guitar, play that sad song again
I drink to forget all that could have been mine
But my heart knows better, it knows I’ll die trying
So bring on the whiskey, and bring on the men

My heart it’s done, there’s nothing left
I’ve cried all my tears and my innocence is spent
I’ve given it all and I’ve nothing to show
How I’ll go on, well God only knows

And this web that I’m weaving will lead to my end
I can’t help but feeling the bottle’s my friend

So bring on the whiskey, the lights and the men
Pick up your guitar, play that sad song again
I drink to forget all that could have been mine
But my heart knows better, it knows I’ll die trying
So bring on the whiskey, and bring on the men
Oh, bring on the whiskey
And bring on the men

Dog Don't Hunt

Written By: Chris Hancock

Well I went out and I caught you in your lie
When I saw your truck parked in Holly Lynn’s drive
You told me you were working
Now I know that’s not true
No, That Dog Don’t Hunt but now I do

Well, I can’t believe that it’s true
You broke my heart now I’m through
If I do unto others the way I’ve been done
Lying and cheating, just for my own fun
Honey, it ain’t right, but I’ve learned from you
No, That Dog Don’t Hunt but now I do

With all your stories that didn’t quite add up
Looking back I can’t believe I never called your bluff
And didn’t you tell me that you’d always be true
No, That Dog Don’t Hunt but now I do

Well, I can’t believe that it’s true
You broke my heart now I’m through
If I do unto others the way I’ve been done
Lying and cheating, just for my own fun
Honey, it ain’t right, but I’ve learned from you
No, That Dog Don’t Hunt but now I do

So you sent some flowers...Yeah, a card with some old line
About how you’re sorry and how you’ve changed this time
Of course I didn’t believe it, but that’s a line that I can use
No, That Dog Don’t Hunt but now I do

CHORUS

Now I can pretend to be crying in my beer
When a man walks up to flirt with me, I’ll lie about my tears
When he throws me a line, well, now I’ve got one too
No, That Dog Don’t Hunt but now I do

CHORUS

Off with Another

Written By: Chris Hancock

Last night she went off with another
By the time I realized, well, she was gone
This time I know there’s no way to get her back
So I’m gonna miss her, so long

Last night I lent my hat to some cute darlin’
Why’d I ever do that, I don’t know
I guess at first it was good to see them hitting it off
But I didn’t pay attention, now my hat’s lost
I didn’t even see them slipping on out that door

I recall thinking they look good together
Man, right then I shoulda pulled her back in and held her close
There’s lots of things that I regret about that evening
But it’s when I first pulled her off of my head, that’s what hurt the most

‘Cause last night I lent my hat to some cute darlin’
Why’d I ever do that, I don’t know
I guess at first it was good to see them hitting it off
But I didn’t pay attention, now my hat’s lost
I didn’t even see them slipping on out that door

All my buddies they even try to help me
They say, Chris “ Hey Man, why you gotta treat her all wrong?”
They say neglecting your hat like that, you don’t deserve her at all
And now she’s gone

‘Cause last night I lent my hat to some cute darlin’
Why’d I ever do that, I don’t know
I guess at first it was good to see them hitting it off
But I didn’t pay attention, now my hat’s lost
I didn’t even see them slipping on out that door

It ain’t funny how something that you love can be gone in a wink
I guess I probably had a little too much to drink
‘Cause I didn’t even see them just slipping on out that door
Yeah, my hat and some girl, they went slipping on out that door

Mother May I

Written By: Chris Brown

Mother, may I be
Half of what you see in me
Half of me finds it’s not that easy, you see

Father, can I pray
Though, I’ll admit it’s my first day
I need help in a big way

Momma, please recite
That prayer again for me tonight
Sure it’s simple, but I can’t get it right

(Chorus 1)
As I walk along the road that lies before me
You know I climb the high tree
And I have a ball until that limb it might just snap
I’m alright with that
‘Cause we’re all…
We’re put here to fall

Mother, I may be
Everything my mind can see
If I believe, if I, I believe

Father, will you stay
And teach me something new today
I wanna’ forget how to run away

Momma, will you say
That nursery rhyme again for me today
Especially now, Dr. Seuss has a say

(Chorus 2)
As I walk along the road that sometimes seems long
Until I jump into a pond
And I have it all until that shark he might attack
I’m alright with that
Cause I gotta’ learn how to take a fall

Mother, may I be
All of what you’ve seen in me
Half of me finds it’s not that easy

Pull Us Out the Rut

Written By: Christopher Brown

I gotta get rid of this truck
The whole damn thing has gone to rust
Deteriorating, while I’m stuck here waiting
For some plan to pull us out the rut
I gotta get rid of this truck

I’ve gotta find
a way to get out from behind it this time
It deducts from my paycheck, leavin nothing left for fun
And that don’t include the 4 buck gas if it did run
I gotta get rid of this truck

They try to say
We can gain control and hold some power in the way
“You push that down there and turn this right here”
But I’ve stomped and I’ve steered with no effect I feel

(I feel) I gotta get rid of this truck
The whole damn thing has gone to rust
Deteriorating, while I’m stuck here waiting
For some plan to pull us out the rut
I gotta get rid of this truck

Now I just wanna know
That we can get just t’ where we need to go
But the few times it’s run, it shot away from me
My brakes, my lights, my bumper, my cries couldn’t stop the tragedy
I gotta get rid of this truck

Now I know that I’m
Not a quitter, I’m the kind that’ll die tryin
But when I give it a good look, the parts are hidden and complex
Nothin like that first model that a simple man could fix

I gotta get rid of this truck
The whole damn thing has gone to rust
Deteriorating, while I’m stuck here waiting
For some plan to pull us out the rut
I gotta get rid of this truck

Forged out of steel
Fueled from the crude oil fields
But what keeps it runnin’ is only drummin’ up lies
When we use it all up, we’ll be left high and dry

CHORUS

This Will All Seem Smaller Soon

Written By: Christopher Brown

This Will All Seem Smaller Soon

Baby, baby
Oh sweet child, your daddy loves you
I can see you’re sad
Don’t think that daddy don’t feel your mad, when you’re asking me
“When are you coming home?
I’d sure be glad”

Baby, baby
I don’t know, but I think time holds the answers
To how we’ll make it through
To how daddy can prove his true love true
Even when I’m not at home
With your mom and you

Baby, baby
Always believe your daddy needs you
I’ll show you the world
I’ll teach you how a boy need treat a girl
And this will all seem smaller soon
Little man

PRE-CHORUS
Some things they can’t be undone
If I knew how I’d have it done
‘Til then let’s sing and dream along
To a song your daddy’s granddad sung

CHORUS
Early in the morning
So early in the morning (2X)
Before the break of day

Discography

"Just a Swig" (EP) 2005
"Merchants of Moonshine" 2006
"More than Whiskey" 2009 (re-released 2012)

Set List

M.o.M. plays anything from short all-original showcases & 4-hour dance hall gigs to corporate events & weddings.... Big or small. We play any mix of originals, modern covers, or traditional cover tunes from the following list to suit performance requirements:
Merchants of Moonshine
Swimmin’ Back to Texas
Whole Lot More
Whiskey and a Rose
This Will All Seem Smaller Soon
Country Love
I’m Not Down
Vegas Swingin’
Mother May I
To Her, The Hurt
Burnin’
Off With Another
Way to Get Away
My Highway
What I’m Drinkin’
Yesterday’s Man
Dog Don’t Hunt
Bring On The Whiskey
Gotta Get Rid of this Truck
Johnny’s Boogie
Fair Daze
Tryin'
Pull us out the Rut
Chuck Berry
Johnny be Good
Robert Earl Keen
Ride
Gringo Honeymoon
Van Morrison
Brown Eyed Girl
Blake Shelton
Old Red
Josh Turner
Will You go with Me
LeAnn Rimes
No