Matt Quarterman
Gig Seeker Pro

Matt Quarterman

Band Rock Americana


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Don’t Loose That Muse"

Of course we all know that just about every kid with a guitar claims Stevie Ray Vaughn, Dave Matthews, or both are their primary influences.

So, when I read that Matt Quarterman referenced Russian rock icon Viktor Tsoi on his website, I knew my comrade was coming at rock from a different place.
The twenty-something musician has lived a nomadic life. At thirteen he relocated with his family to Odessa, Ukraine from Portugal. The move was trying, but he threw himself into Russian language and culture. He also got a start on his musical career and formed the only American rock band for 1000 kilometers.

Jovial and magnetic are the words that came to mind watching Matt Quarterman for the first time. His covers of popular tunes on the subway at Park Street had people literally lining up to give him money. His sunken eyes and tattoo cloaked skin suggested this starving artist had a past that was a little more rock than pop.

Meeting Matt and hearing his great work, one can’t help but want to stick around.

For tour dates, more information, and tell Matt he is one lucky guy please go to
- INsite Boston Magazine, September 2005

""Misplaced Americans" CD Review"

Given the fact that singer/songwriter Matt Quarterman lived in Portugal, the Ukraine, and Mississippi before relocating to Boston to study at Berklee, it’s surprising to discover that the music on his new EP, Misplaced Americans, isn’t the “Son House howling accordion covers of Amália-Rodrigues” one might expect, but actual straightforward roots and folk rock. There’s a touch of the eclectic, courtesy of an occasional mandolin flourish, accordion intro, or electronic buzz, but otherwise, Americans is simply pleasant singer/songwriter fare.

The soft and lyrically rich “Pushkin Street” is a perfect three-minute folk gem, complete with beautiful mandolin and cello sounds and lines like “Alex waits with Milton, Lord Byron and Keats.” It’s a poignant, vivid picture, and one that lingers far after it’s over. Elsewhere, the muffled drum beat and soft piano playing on “The Shore” meld perfectly with Quarterman’s moody lyrics and acoustic plucking, while the accordion intro to “Trapped” is absolutely breathtaking. Unfortunately, once the intro fades, things veer into a muck of melodramatic predictability a la Seven Mary Three.

“Radiohead Song,” by far the most musically creative track on the disc, is a peculiar experiment that straddles that infamous David St. Hubbins-inspired line between stupid and clever. Buried in layers of distortion, electronics, and polyrhythmic drums, Quarterman manages to weave almost a dozen Radiohead titles — and the chorus of “No Surprises” — into a four-minute story song about a dude battling a heavy bout of paranoia. It could have been a train wreck, but Quarterman saves it thanks to his creativity and sincerity.

When Quarterman snags the Songwriting degree he’s pursuing at Berklee, it should do nothing less than further expand his talent. In the meantime, the eight tracks on the Misplaced Americans EP show the early stages of a very promising singer/songwriter. In the future, hopefully he will further use the music from his eclectic past to distinguish himself in a seemingly endless pool of singer/songwriters. - Northeastern Performer


2005 - DEMOcracy (Self-Released EP)
2006 - Misplaced Americans (Republic Music)



Matt Quarterman was born to missionary parents in Portugal. When he was 13 his family moved to Odessa, Ukraine, where with several friends he founded Nonchalance, the only English-speaking rock band for 1000 kilometers. After graduating he moved to Mississippi to earn a degree in English, and unexpectedly found a bride along the way. He and his wife Erin moved to Boston, Massachusetts where Matt is finishing his Songwriting degree at Berklee College of Music.

Given his frenetic upbringing, you would rightly expect the music Matt makes to be somewhat eclectic and left of center. He's been a singer/songwriter since he was 13 and plays guitar, harmonica, Dobro, mandolin and banjo. He's written hundreds of songs, combining elements of country, rockabilly, old-time folk music, the Russian bard tradition, blues, classical and pop/rock.

“It's definitely a weird mix,” he laughs. “But I guess most of my musical heroes played music that was a bizarre mish-mash. Guys like Johnny Cash or Viktor Tsoi combined genres in ways they hadn't been mixed before. You forget because it was done so well they made it sound natural.” His debut EP Misplaced Americans showcases that kind of organic, juxtaposed approach to music. There's Russian-tinged folk (Pushkin Street), electronica (Radiohead Fan), barn-burning country (Closed Down) and epic rock (White Morning).

“I want the listener to really feel like they've traveled somewhere,” Matt explains. “There are a lot of different genres and emotions just in these eight songs, and that was done with a purpose. I want someone to sit down and listen to it start to finish, and at the end feel like they've arrived someplace different from where they began. Maybe it's because I traveled around so much growing up, but I get restless easily. I don't like staying in one place too long or just harping on one emotion or vibe too much.

Matt's won several awards for his poetry and when asked if he has a different lyrical viewpoint because of his background in literature, he answers, “Maybe so. I feel like there's so much that hasn't been said in popular music, so many subjects and approaches that have been addressed in books or art or film. That's one of the things that's always excited me about being a songwriter: extending my reach, finding the ways to express these ineffable things in words and music. I hope these songs reach people who want to go on that kind of journey.”

Is that idea of a journey reflected in the title? “Oh, yeah. It's kind of a provocative title, isn't it? Down with the imperialist pigs: reclaim the land for the working masses! No, actually it's more of a personal thing. For years I questioned whether or not I was American, trying to find some kind of identity. And I think that in studying literature and listening to a lot of music both Russian and American, and especially in writing a lot of these songs I've settled that for myself. I'm sort of a wandering American, never quite at home anywhere. There's a beauty in that to me.

“And a lot of these songs deal with those ideas of place and time. Whether the past is lot to us, where home is, the nostalgia and emotions from a specific period. You know, all those trivial questions in life. I may have also answered whether the fridge light stays on after you close the door. That's on the bonus track. But this is sort of the soundtrack to my journey, and my hope for the music is that it can become a part of that trip for somebody else. I'd love to see these songs reach out to you and be absorbed as part of your own pilgrimage.”

How does he expect that to happen? “Well, I have a lot of long conversations with my friends late at night about the music that's been important to us. So often it's tied to your own circumstances, the whens and wheres. I want to make music that speaks to that, to be a part of that conversation for someone.

“All this to say,” he concludes, “BUY MY ALBUM! It's new and you'll love it and won't ever regret it! Please, I'm starving and I need the cash.” He laughs. “But I'm alright with that. Nothing that's worth doing is ever easy.”