Matt Pless

Matt Pless

 Baltimore, Maryland, USA

Check out Matt may have just discovered your new favorite singer/songwriter!

"The Book of You and I"


Combining elements of folk, punk, pop and roots rock, Matt Pless can lyrically turn a phrase with the best of them. Known for his engaging and thought-provoking witty lyrics, his music spans topics from love and loss to social commentary, from drug abuse to friendship…even ethereal train of thought abstractions.
Coffee shops, clubs, basements, living rooms…wherever there are people who want to hear his music, Matt will accommodate. He books his own tour dates and along the way has managed to share the stage with Maroon 5, Fallout Boy, Ani Difranco, David Amram, Rilo Kiley, Alkaline Tri, NOFX, Arlo Guthrie, Pete Seeger, Ghost Mice, Ramshackle Glory, The Queers, Warren Haynes, Ryan Harvey, Bad Brains, and others. A consummate performer with a high energy stage presence, Matt’s universally relatable songs will leave you talking, thinking…and thirsty for more.
As the lead singer/songwriter for his high school punk band, 3 Prong Outlet, Matt released three albums of original pop punk songs and toured with the band up and down the East Coast and out to the Midwest. When he and the band members went their separate ways, it was not a difficult move for Matt to venture out on his own, releasing his first solo album “Requiems for Wishing Wells”. This saw his lyrical and songwriting prowess advance far beyond the realms of his previous ventures. He was tackling more complicated topics with the crowd-pleasing “What You Will”, “The Joker and the Fool”, and “The Gypsy Life” earning the young man from Catonsville, MD a reputation as a lyricist to watch. He followed the release with his first 3-month U.S. tour!
When Matt set out for NYC for the first time, he spent his first night playing in the subway for tips. He continued to play for change and added Washington Square Park to his busking list. As a result of his street singing, he was approached for inclusion in “The Noise beneath the Apple”, a book documenting buskers and street performers in New York City. His song, “New York Monday” is featured on the book’s accompanying vinyl compilation. Eventually, his talent led him to play many of the top songwriter venues in the Big Apple, including The Sidewalk Café, Rockwood Music Hall, The Bitter End, Café Vivaldi and The City Winery.
With the release of his second solo effort, “Alarm Clock, Time Bomb”, Matt went right back out on the road for a full summer of touring circling the country playing house shows and street corners from coast to coast. His songwriting structure and poetics were reaching new heights and he began to add finger picking to his repertoire of guitar techniques. “Where the Horses Won’t Go” and “Flowers in the Furnace” are two hypnotic poems from that album that question the world and its social structures. It also includes the biting Woody Guthrie style inspired commentary on the modern technological age called “Talkin’ Information Blues”. Another cut, the nostalgic “In the Past Tense”, earned him a finalist spot in the Great American Song contest. Carolyn Hart, (widow of songwriting legend Bobby Hart of Boyce and Hart) said of it, “Love the song…this really spoke to my heart”. He was now receiving accolades from other sources including the world renowned folk music impresario, Izzy Young who said “ [Matt] has something. It’s good! How can lyrics so meaningful come from somebody so young?”
The release of Matt’s third solo album saw additional growth to his writing ability. An analysis of the ups and downs of love and addiction, “Ballerina” offered songs destined to be classics such as the shadowy after hours world of chemical induced New York night life portrayed in “The Crayon Song” , the upbeat and humorous marijuana laced sing-along “Glassy Eyes” and the thoughtful ballad of lost love called “Tomorrow is a Word We’ll Never Know” which was covered by female country stylist, Kel C. (This upbeat country version became one of her most popular tracks, showing just how universal and flexible Matt’s songs can be.)
Matt continued to tour relentlessly, supporting Irish folk duo “Heathers”, traveling to Indiana to play at a popular underground punk gathering called “Plan it X Fest”, and spending the bulk of the spring and summer of 2011 broadening his fan base in as many states as he could. Early that fall he ventured to Zuccotti Park in NYC during the Occupy Wall Street protests to play some music there and ended up becoming the impetus behind a benefit compilation cd called Occupy This Album. He contributed his original composition “Something’s Got to Give” to the cd which also included tracks performed by artists like Joan Baez, Crosby and Nash, Debbie Harry, Tom Morello, Thievery Corporation, the Guthrie Family, Yoko Ono, Lucinda Williams, Patti Smith and Willie Nelson, among others. Matt also created the cover art for the album, a recognition of his lifelong talent for drawing and the visual arts. In the months that followed, he appeared in national music publications such


The Crayon Song

Written By: Matt Pless

The Crayon Song

It’s 3 a.m., and the conversation’s spent.
She’s waiting on the bedside
Wrapped within the static wind
And she’s got powders and pills
Chasing thrills through dollar bills;
Tracing lines off her reflection
With her senses so distilled.
As she drifts on through this dream,
She can share her medication
But she can’t outrun the rain
When clearly, here she stands
With candy in her hands.
She offers up the pixie dust
And separates the sand.
And I’ll say, it’s all right,
No need to ask me twice.
She spins the rings so she can sing
The crayon song tonight.
She’s gonna’ sing the crayon song tonight.

When she calls, you can find her in the hall
Where she’s scribbling a picture
She hangs crooked on the wall
She’s framing false alarms.
‘Til her chambermaids have gone
She’ll be sleeping by the music box
Whose tune keeps playing on.
Her behavior seems insane
‘Cause we both know you might overdose
From trying to kill the pain
But lately, here we stand
With candy in our hands.
Let’s mix us up some pixie dust
And sprinkle on the sand.
We’ll just say, it’s all right
No need to ask me twice
Let’s spin the rings and we can sing
The crayon song tonight.
We’re gonna’ sing the crayon song tonight

I’m off to wander with my lover in her bag of pretty colors

Fan the flame, and erase another day
She’ll be running all the red lights
‘Til the candles melt away.
Along this empty road, where the flowers never grow
Casting shadows drenched in sorrow
From a life she’ll spend alone
Until the sunshine sets her free.
It’s been clear that you’ve been down so long
It looks like up to me
But sadly, here I stand,
With candy in my hand.
I’m mixed up with the pixie dust
And sinking in the sand
Where something’s not quite right.
Sometimes you should think twice.
I spun the rings and now I’ll sing
The crayon songs all night
I’m gonna sing the crayon song tonight.

White Picket Fences

Written By: Matt Pless

White Picket Fences
There once was a boy who sat in a box
for twenty some years
‘til they shipped him off
to a brand new box.
But that’s ok.
‘Cause the love of his life
who became his bride
would stand by his side
‘til he put her aside.
Now she cries over puddles of spilled pride.
But that’s ok.
And they raised a child to think for himself
‘til he questioned God then he needed help
so they got that prescription filled.
And now that’s ok
And everyday they wake and they open their eyes
then they put on their masks and they go outside
and they hide what’s inside from a world they despise.
But that’s ok
It’s all right, it’s ok all in all in disarray
It’s the same thing every day and that’s ok.
It’s all right, it’s ok,
all in all what can you say?
Is it ever going to change if it’s ok?
So they live behind a white picket fence
where their rules were sent from the government
through a pixel box that makes no sense.
But that’s ok
Daddy slaves away so the bills get paid.
Mommy finds new ways to sedate the pain
while little what-his-name plays video games.
And that’s ok.
When you’re glued in front of a flat TV
where you’ll never question authority
you’ll just be all that you can be.
But that’s ok.
Until you fall in line thinking you don’t care
while you run in circles and get nowhere
then you’ll wonder how you ended up there.
But that’s ok
It’s all right, it’s ok
they look just like you and me flailing in their misery.
And that’s ok.
It’s all right it’s ok when it’s all work and no play
It makes Jack a real dull boy.
But that’s ok.
Now they’re all caught up in the same routine
while they’re chasing down some elusive dream.
In the scheme of things it seems obscene.
But that’s ok.
‘Cause the kid’s in school, but he cannot think
while his mom’s handcuffed to the kitchen sink
and his dad’s in love when he has a drink.
But that’s ok.
And he says "My son if you only knew
what that cereal box has in store for you
you’d be drinking coffee too.”
And that’s ok.
‘Cause they might be black or they might be white;
and they might be left and they might be right.
But they all lose sight in the end.
And that’s ok
It’s all right, it’s ok
in the land of liberty
where there’s nothing really free.
And that’s ok
It’s all right, it’s ok
that’s the way its gotta’ be
when we all end up the same.
And that’s ok.
‘Cause we’ve got ourselves to blame
but that’s ok.
Going to find another way if that’s ok

The Best of Me

Written By: Matt Pless

Lost myself in your wishing well
Yeah, you’re breaking this heart of mine.
Counting cracks in the wedding bells
And you’re breaking this heart of mine.
Your rain pours down on my parade
Like angels crying razorblades.
Walking hand-in-hand with a hand grenade
Yeah, you’re breaking this heart of mine.

Shotgun eyes and a bullet smile
Yeah, you’re breaking this heart of mine.
Give an inch and you’ll take a mile
‘Cause your breaking this heart of mine.
This love for you I can’t explain.
I’ve only got myself to blame,
Because life’s a drag with this ball and chain
And you’re breaking this heart of mine.

And though it seems like yesterday I was your only one.
It’s plain to see our season’s come and gone.
By giving you the best of me the worst is what I’ve done.
To think you thought that I could do no wrong.

Scream and shout, yeah, ya’ run your mouth
Yet you’re breaking this heart of mine.
Hang around like a thunder cloud
And you’re breaking this heart of mine.
The green eyed monsters sing the blues
I wait up every night for you,
But the morning paper says I'm old news
‘Cause your breaking this heart of mine.

Bottoms up and I’ll knock ‘em back
Yeah, you’re breaking this heart of mine.
Got some rope and a railroad track
‘Cause your breaking this heart of mine.
I taste his lips each time we kiss
And you just call me a hypocrite.
Yeah, I think its time that we called it quits
‘Cause your breaking this heart of mine


Matt Pless 2012 Acoustic demo
Ballerina - full length
Alarm Clock Time Bomb - full length
Requiems for Wishing Wells - full length
The Crayon Song - 4 song sampler

Set List

All songs are original and written by Matt Pless