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Houston, Texas, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2014 | SELF | AFTRA

Houston, Texas, United States | SELF | AFTRA
Established on Jan, 2014
Band Rock Jazz




"New Life: Moji Brings a Diverse Sound To Houston"

The most beautiful thing about Houston, is that our city is a melting pot of people from different places and different cultures; many of whom have talents that they bring with them. You realize this when you taste a different type of food, or you find a different article of clothing. But sometimes, its so much more, so much deeper; that when you pay attention, you find hidden gems. A great example of this would be the band, Moji. Their sound is like a mix of jazz, soul, and a hint of rock n roll that’s one of the more diverse and entertaining things you’ll hear in a good while. I won’t be shocked if you’ve never heard of them, but I would be shocked if you didn’t like them at first listen. You see, the band’s singer, Moji Abiola; has the kind of credits that many artists work a lifetime for. An appearance on The Late Show with David Letterman, and several mentions and reviews in the New York Times; you wouldn’t know that when you meet her. Zero pretension and zero attitude, Moji makes you feel welcome when you’re in her presence. Two weeks ago, I was invited with others from the media world to watch them record their upcoming EP. What I left with was an insight to what could be Houston’s next big thing.

SugarHill is so much the same, yet so different from what it once appeared to be. The front room is still filled with cases that hold the gold records from their efforts, and the halls are still adorned with a small glimpse of who’s recorded there; but it feels stronger than I remembered. Things were to get going at 9:00 after a brief meet and greet with the band, but they didn’t really get started to closer to 10:00. Moji, is a three piece comprised of drummer David Garcia, Moji Abiola on lead vocals, and guitarist Troy Creagh. The band, is magical to watch and listen to perform. I remember thinking of the energetic realms in which the drums thumped, the guitar swayed, and Moji’s vocals had an almost angelic sense to them.

Things stop, as they often do when a band records a song. After some redone versions of things, how the drums sound in the vocal booth, what parts and pace to utilize, and they’re back on. Watching how the band interacts with engineer Josh Applebee gave the feel that this wasn’t their first time working together. With the first song, “Cease Fire,” the drums came across with their intentions known. Garcia created a sound that was like an organized drum circle, while Creagh’s guitar slinked in and out. The way Moji sings, she’s the most obvious sound in the mix, the power in her voice and her inflection is immediately felt by everyone in the engineering booth. Her vocal style is soft and breathy, while her intensity is felt with each note. When she holds a note, it’s obvious this isn’t her first rodeo. The band’s excitement as they play is felt throughout the feverish tracking; being done live in execution. When the take ends, it feels like everyone around me doesn’t know how to explain what they’ve just seen.

When they regroup, the vibe of the second song they record, “Constellations” has a very different vibe. Sultry, smoky vocals run atop a smoothly veiled slip of sound. The guitar mixed with thunderous drums is peppered by Moji’s sexy vocal track. She uses the opening chorus as an excuse to slip powerful vocal bursts in one of the most strong ways possible. The guitar runs up & down the fretboard like he’s running from the law. When there are breaks, they’re mixed with her sex appeal based vox. The drums crash in and out of the verse and allow Moji to come in and out with jaw dropping intensity.

The operatic grace in which she sings, on the third track, “Free” (alternate ending) sounds like a powerfully haunting ghost who will never leave your dreams. The funky vibe of the track, had such an amped up Motown meets SugarHill of years past feeling. The precision between the three is mesmerizing, as they sashay through the song without ever missing a beat or cue. The break point on the track, things slow, and the guitar takes a rhythmic flow while the drums thunderously pace out the song. Natural distortion of a guitar thru a bass amp, are followed by a meandering guitar that has the feel of something played by Flea. When Moji reaches deep, she finishes loud and proud.

The final song, “Paris” starts out like a Sergio Mendes tune. Complete with a softly played drum track and Moji’s softly placed vocals. She uses an airy demeanor in how she sings the track with definitely a loving sound to them. When the chorus drops, there’s a bit of ferocity until she squeezes all of the honey from each note. There’s definitely a hint of Sade channeling throughout the vocals. The track reaches a dirtier feel towards the song’s closing end, before heading back into the Barney Kessel meets Sergio Mendes feel from before.

After watching all of this, I realized that there’s a great chance that Moji could be the next big thing to come out of Houston. The versatility of the band, the way they feed off one another, and the power of the trio as a unit is immense and hard to ignore. The overall sound of the group emotes that vibe of cool breezes outdoors on a crisp Autumn evening. Luckily for you, Moji will be performing in just that type of setting on Saturday October 18th at Discovery Green. The band will be a part of the Green Flea by Night market, and they perform for FREE at the all ages event from 7:00 to 9:00. - Free Press Houston

"Television spot- Great Day Houston"

Moji rocks the house with their blend of rock, soul, and jazz and perform their song 'Free' KHOU - KHOU


My favorite part of each and every Free Press Summer Festival, is the diverse crop of talent that performs from the local stages each year. That diversity is what sets Houston apart musically from anywhere else in Texas, let alone; the country. One of Houston’s most diverse acts, Moji will be performing at this year’s festival, and much like their very different sound, they are easily the most diverse act on the bill. Performing a mix of jazz, rock, soul, and even a little blues; the three piece pulls more sound from a guitar, a drum kit, and one of the best set of pipes you’ll ever hear. FPH caught up with the three piece consisting of Troy Creagh on guitar, David Garcia on drums, and Moji Abiola on vocals, to get their take on their sound, and to find out what they have in store for those who attend. In the spirit of their different approach, each member answered each question in their own way.

FPH: The three of you all come from different places, can you tell the band members’ pasts and what projects you three each worked on prior to starting this band?

MOJI: (Troy): I went to school for music and I practice four hours a day. I play a lot of jazz and that’s how Moji and David found me; thus we’ve played together ever since. (Moji): I’m originally from New York, and I lived in Atlanta, New York again, London, and Nigeria. I didn’t really take music too seriously until I moved to Houston, after college. I was in a funk band here called Two Dollar Sound from 2007-2010, but we broke up when I moved to England to get my master’s degree. I was also in The Journey Agents, I got a little sick of funk and started a short lived project that lead me to David & Troy. I’d rather not have my name be the band name, but it’s nice to not have to hide behind a band name. (David): Prior to this band, I have a 20 plus year history of playing live music in Texas. That also includes recording and doing session work.

FPH: There’s a very eclectic mix of soul, jazz, and elements of rock in your sounds, do you have a name or a genre for what you do as a band, or is it just your sound?

MOJI: (Troy): Sincerity is what I feel our sound is. (Moji): I don’t really know if there’s a genre we could be pegged into. Depending on the song you’re listening to, it could change. I feel like when I took it to a friend of mine in Portland who was in radio; he said it had a more rock vibe with jazzy flavors and a soul presence. Honestly, it’s just our sound. We have such a limited amount of instruments that we’re forced to just paint as colorful a picture as we can. It’s just us; for better or worse. (David): I think it’s just our sound. It’s very diverse from each of our different backgrounds. I was really into funk and later jazz, so I guess what we’re influenced by is what we each bring to the table. Ultimately it’s just our sound.

FPH: Moji herself has appeared on The Late Show and she’s had reviews in the New York Times. Has anyone else in the band received any accolades and what’s it like starting all over as a new act in a new city?

MOJI: (Troy): No, I feel like I got lucky meeting Moji and David. They have made playing in this city an amazing experience. (Moji): I can’t speak for everyone else, but I think starting as a new act in a new genre was very strange. This is a new playing field for me, because it’s been hard to find bands for us to play with sometimes. You have to go back to see what others have been doing, because it’s hard to find where we fit in today’s music world. To me, water always finds its level. Good music will always be in style, and will have an audience, and there’s enough space in people’s ears and people’s hearts that they can like our stuff as well as other things. (David): I have had several privileges throughout the years, I performed on FPSF prior, I’ve performed on Bonnaroo, as well as endorsements and interviews over the years.

FPH: You’ve dropped the single “Ceasefire,” which is part of an upcoming EP, correct? When will we see that be released?

MOJI: (Troy): I feel like that’s definitely a Moji question. (Moji): The EP is slated hopefully to be released in May prior to our performance at the festival. We’re headed back to Sugar Hill to, I’d say we already have the meat and potatoes part of it recorded, so now we’re going back in to add the garnish. (David): I’m gonna’ lean towards Moji answering this. We’ve recorded and will continue to record with Josh Applebee, and hopefully tour after it’s released.

FPH: Each member of this band brings something completely different yet individualistic to the group. Is there one element you try to focus on or are the songs always written with the group in mind?

MOJI: (Troy): The songs, or at least the ideas for my parts come from my time practicing, then I bring them to band practice for Moji to write and add a melody to. The songs are then collectively arranged through a very organic process of jamming and critical thought/discussion. My main concerns are keeping time and making sure that our songs have interesting harmonic progressions that still fit Moji’s melodies. (Moji): It depends. when we were first starting, I already had songs I wanted to work on while attempting to develop a sound. Now we mesh easier because we work better together where we try to work on one element, having substance. Music can be fluff and cotton candy, but we try to make everything as beautifully complicated while still showcasing that we have an ear for what we’re doing with rhythms and styles. Just an honest portrayal of all we’re into separately. Troy will always bring a jazz voicing to the songs, I try to add a bit of conveyance to the words and an evocative side to the vocals and melodies. David always adds a bit of tension which works because we listen to each other as we play very well. Sometimes the songs change and we work around by doing what’s best for the song without fracturing any ego attached to one part or another. (David): I feel we have the fortune to respectfully listen to one another as musicians and artists. I think we all compliment each other with our own styles, while still giving a chance to each shine.

FPH: You have achieved quite a bit for an act so early in its’ infancy, and now you’re performing on Houston’s biggest concert event. What do you have in store for those who attend this year’s Free Press Summer Fest?

MOJI: (Troy): A completely new sound that will change the way you listen to your world. (Moji): Can I be honest, I don’t feel like we’ve achieved enough. The festival is a huge compliment, but I feel like we should have people buzzing about us. I feel like we should have been able to do much more, but I think it’s nice to know that people know we can put on a great live show. It’s kind of strange, my family’s coming in. We’ve been working on how to add decorations to the songs that are already written, just for this show. Hopefully a feast for the eyes and the ears, maybe people in costume or dancers. We ultimately want you to look at us like, “wow, that sound is coming from three people?” I just want to make music that has integrity, is important, and is impressive. And I hope that’s what people take away from it, and that we’re here to win you over mind, body, and soul. (David): Without a doubt, we’ve had the good fortune to be in a vehicle that’s moving so fast. Our first live performance was White Linen Night, less than nine months ago. Now to be on this festival is crazy, so hopefully some guest spots, a good time, and maybe choreographed dancers is what we’ll bring to the performance.

As you can tell, these three are different from what you might hear happening in today’s music world. The fact that each is an accomplished musician in their own right only adds to the magic that they bring together when they perform. Like all of the local acts on the festival this year, Moji has definitely earned the right to perform in front of such a large crowd. and if you miss them you’ll be missing out on a band that represents the diversity of our city as a whole, and who could easily become something greater than the city itself. - Free Press Houston


2014- Ceasefire (Single)

2015- MOJI, EP



MOJI is a three-piece rock band out of Houston, Texas whose style is based in blues and jazz. Conceived in February 2014 with David Garcia on drums, Troy Creagh on guitar, and Moji Abiola singing and writing. Their music is emotive and lush with each member of MOJI bringing a sonically dynamic element to the listener; rhythms that change from hip-hop to rock in an instant, open chords that slink into sultry sambas, and the sweet lilt of a lover's whisper that builds to a gale-force howl.

Band Members