Discover New Music

Last.fm is a music discovery service that gives you personalised recommendations based on the music you play.

Start your Last.fm profile Close window

Howe Gelb

Tags

Everyone’s tags

More tags

Biography

Howe Gelb is an American artist who has fronted the band Giant Sand since the 80s, as well as several side projects, including The Band of Blacky Ranchette, OP8 and Arizona Amp and Alternator.

THIS IS EROSION ROCK: Inaccurately yet affectionately dubbed “the Godfather of Alt. Country” by the British press, Tucson, Arizona-based musician Howe Gelb has remained the sole epicenter and creative force behind the ever-fluid configurations of Giant Sand for over a quarter century, giving birth along the way to an extended musical family tree that fostered the likes of The Band of…Blacky Ranchette, The Friends of Dean Martinez, OP8, and Calexico. “Giant Sand is a mood,” explained Howe, as if to simplify the dizzying breadth of his prolific output as an artist. With an impressive catalog of material that stretches back to 1983, he can easily claim some 40 albums to his credentials as both a band leader and a solo performer, each of which maintains its own genre-defying singularity while also drawing on the not-so disparate threads of country, southwestern roots, lo-fi, jazz, and punk—or the “yippity and happenstance“ that arises to inspire the soundscape of
whatever project Gelb is involved in creating.

But Howe’s initial signposts were planted crookedly in Pennsylvania during the 1970s, among them being the rock opera ZEQE 24,088 which was recorded in 3 hours at a PBS radio station. In 1972, when floodwaters claimed his hometown and family house, ultimately sending him downstream to Arizona alongside the debris of his parents’ divorce, the song “Steadfast” was born as an articulation of that disaster. Soon upon arriving in Tucson, he met his sonic soul mate in the guitarist Rainer Ptacek, and as a result the two went on to form the Giant Sandworms.

Videos

Top Albums

Events

Add event

Listening Trend

67,170listeners all time
704,110scrobbles all time
Recent listeners trend:

Start scrobbling and track your listening history

Last.fm users scrobble the music they play in iTunes, Spotify, Rdio and over 200 other music players.

Create a Last.fm profile

Shoutbox

Leave a comment. Log in to Last.fm or sign up.

Listening Now

Top Listeners