Joshua Sanders

Joshua Sanders

 New York City, New York, USA

I perform my own songs at venues around NYC with a fiddler bass player; heavily influenced by Americana/alt-country music ie Townes van Zandt etc. I have recently had radio airplay on Americana/country radio on WKCR 89.9 (NYC) WICR 88.7 (Indianapolis). Huge fan of Bruce Springsteen!


Josh Sanders' musical background includes years of study in jazz and blues guitar (electric and acoustic) & bluegrass (acoustic). Josh performs regularly around NYC, the Hudson Valley and Jersey Shore either solo or with his trio of Max Johnson on bass and Ben Swan on fiddle. Josh has been a guest, twice, on the highly regarded "Tennessee Border Show" on NYC's WKCR, and Joshs music has received radio airplay on Americana/country radio station WICR 88.7 in Indianapolis as well as on the WFDU 89.1 "Traditions" program with Ron Olesko, and on internet radio (Terry Ann McClean's Bluegrass Mix, Josh's music page is at; additional videos can be found at
Joshua Sanders songwriting shows the influences of his two longtime heroes, Bruce Springsteen and the late Townes van Zandt. Though a native of New York City, he became corrupted driving cross country on his way to college in California when he heard local bands covering Take Me Back to Tulsa, Im Too Young to Marry and Mama Dont Let Your Babies Grow up to be Cowboys. A summer spent in Santa Barbara and listening to country bands covering Merle Haggard and Johnny Cash tunes at the now defunct Sportsman Bar sealed the deal. Joshs teachers have included singing coaches/voice instructors Susan Anders in Los Angeles and Janie Barnett in New York. He studied guitar in Los Angeles with Gary Mandell of Boulevard Music and in New York with Glenn Alexander, Matt Smith and Robin Greenstein. Mr. Sanders' early band experience was primarily electric blues, which he found was tremendously helpful in terms of putting all those guitar lessons to some kind of practical use, as well as figuring out how to work with the bass and drums to form a singular sound. Since 1999 he has attended several songwriting circles here in New York, with a goal, rarely achieved, of writing one song every week.


Four Years in the Big House

Written By: Joshua Sanders

Four Years in the Big House
© 1999 by Joshua Sanders

Waitin’ on the 3:09, Tennessee bound
Bandit and a guitar and a nasty lookin’ hound
Waitin’ here a while sir but I don’t really mind
I done four years in the big house out by Mason County line

Tearin round that bend whistle blowin’ in the rain
We’re rollin’ into Memphis mister on that night train
I ain’t played since I been in, I’ll be shakin’ of the dust
I done four years ion the big house ‘cause I robbed the union trust

Four years in the big house it weren’t the place for me
I nearly made the border in my rusty ‘83
Four years in the big house I surely missed my dog
Get a faster car if you’re runnin’ from the law

Well I kept my nose clean, out of them prison gangs,
Made friends with Big Ed, an orangutan
My parole board came up, they said hit the road
I was gone gone gone y’all been a pleasure to know

Oklahoma plains ‘neath a winter sky of grey
Barns of red and blue in the fading light of day
Eleven long hours ‘fore I reach the Promised Land
But four years in the big house makes you a patient man

Four years in the big house it weren’t no cup of tea
Warden James done made it plain he weren’t too fond of me.
Four years in the big house I surely missed my dog
Now I blown the slammer warden’s daughter might I call

Four years in the big house my friends I’m sure you see
The most they should have given me was maybe one to three
Four years in the big house did I ever miss my dog
We always could communicate without true dialogue
Gonna let him pick a toy from the Petco catalogue
Memphis is awaitin’ I got a suitcase full of songs.


Written By: Joshua Sanders

Missy © 2010 Joshua Sanders
Headin’ down the road down to Heartbreak City
Got a bag full of blues and a heap of self pity
I’m a-drivin’ through the night ‘neath the unforgiving rain
Radio man come on ease my pain

I’m tired and broke no nickel to spare
Gimme a quarter and I’ll call someone who cares
Rain’s pouring in on my old blue sweater
Things can’t get any worse they got to get better

C#m A E
Ch) I’d much rather be fishing for bass
C#m A E
But my rent is late and they turned off my gas
I owe my phone bill from the month before last
Boy you better pull your head out of your ass

Coffee in a diner off of County Route 9
Eggs over easy listen to the trucks whine
I’m a-fightin off sleep Missy make mine black
I gotta hit it into Tulsa and a-halfway back

Tell me Missy what your secret might be
Dancin’ through your night, happy and free
Wink and a smile for the grumpy old man
At table eleven with his bowl of oat bran

Chorus & Gtr break

Morning sun breakin’ through the black storm clouds
Shaft of light shining a mile on south
Distant thunder across the valley floor
I watch an eagle on a draft from the hood of my Ford

I smell the wet grass I smell the cow dung
I suck the morning air deep inside my lungs
There’s a rainbow in my mirror as I pass a freightliner
Stretching back to Route 9 and that girl in the diner

Anna Lee

Written By: Joshua Sanders

Anna Lee
© Joshua Sanders Capo 2

V1) Comin’ on home from the Jackson Yard
Em C
I’m workin’ all day and sweatin’ like a hog
Lyin’ in your arms with the sun goin’ down
I’m pickin’ on my banjo and singin’ you a song

V2)Well I saw you last summer on your chestnut mare
Yellow ribbon in your auburn hair
Cowboy boots and a cobra tattoo
Kiss me now baby ‘neath the Mississippi moon
Ch) Anna Lee your hair shinin’ in the night
Em C
Shining like gold baby shimmering bright
Anna Lee I wanna be your king
Em G
Dozen red roses and a diamond ring
Dance with me neath’ the willow tree
Anna Lee

V3) Your daddy made his living shooting pool
And you learned when you was little and home from school
Friday night we’re down at Mustang Red’s
Honky tonk heaven, biker homestead

V4) Them boys got a little more than they bargained for
When you let them flat broke just in time for last call
Now we’re running for our lives like a midnight train
A hundred miles an hour down a county two lane


Gtr break

V4)We got married down by the river blue
In a little white church on the first of June
Preacher said “Son you may kiss the bride”
Your daddy beamed and your mamma cried

V6)Now your dancing with your daddy to a Cajun jug band
Family is all here from across the land
And a couple them bikers from Mustang red’s
Brought a keg of cold beer on a Chevy flat bed


Alley Cat

Written By: Joshua Sanders

Alley Cat
© 2009 Joshua Sanders

Well along come Sally down her favorite back alley
Silver whiskers and a coat of black fur
She was looking for the day’s catch out behind the kitchen hatch
Of Jody’s Fish Fry down on Broadway and Third

Well Ted he was a tabby, though a little bit flabby
He never did think of himself as fat
He was calm and collected, savoire faire perfected
He regarded himself as one cool cat

Alley cat, alley cat dodging through the cars
Sitting on a trash can, meowing at the stars
Alley cat, alley cat struttin’ round town
Staying a step ahead of the man from the pound

Well old Mrs. Grady drove up in her Mercedes
With bowls of Purina for Sally and Ted
That never were they hungry, empty rumbling tummies
Old Mrs. Grady always kept them well fed

Alley cat, alley cat dodging through the cars
Sitting on a trash can, meowing at the stars
Alley cat, alley cat struttin’ round town
Staying a step ahead of the man from the pound

Well a man appeared one night, he was dressed all in white
Sally and Ted never even saw him coming
They flew down that alley, was this their grand finale?
Trapped there in the corner with no hope of running

Then there was a big commotion, sudden raw emotion
Old Mrs. Grady had clearly come unglued
She was cursin and a-steamin’, blood curdling screaming,
Chasing that man from the pound with her shoe

Alley cat, alley cat dodging through the cars
Sitting on a trash can, meowing at the stars
Alley cat, alley cat struttin’ round town
Staying a step ahead of the man from the pound

Alley cat, alley cat dodging through the cars
Sitting on a trash can, meowing at the stars
Alley cat, alley cat struttin’ round town
Every day’s a good one, when you ain’t in the pound


Studio album due out sometime in early spring..
"Alley Cat", Four Years in the Big House", "Anna Lee" and "I'm Gonna be on the Radio" have all been WICR 88.7 in Indianapolis. Music is broadcast from studio and streamed live over internet simultaneously.
"Four Years in the Big House" has been on Internet radio station on Teri Ann Mclean's show...

Set List

12 or so songs, mostly originals, with a Townes van Zandt cover and a couple of Old Crowe Medicine show tunes...