Hints of classical music and traditional blues will come together once again when Noah Hoehn performs in a free concert at 7 p.m. Aug. 23 at the amphitheater on the campus of Missouri State University-West Plains (MSU-WP).
Hoehn performed for the first time in West Plains Aug. 18, 2020, to an enthusiastic crowd. That response prompted officials with the MSU-WP University/Community Programs (U/CP) Department to reach out to Hoehn again to kick off this year’s theater and events programming for the fall semester.
“Noah Hoehn gave a great performance last year, one that was thoroughly enjoyed by all who attended,” U/CP Director Brenda Polyard said. “His unique performance left the audience wanting more, and we’re excited to bring him back for another great evening of music. We hope you’ll join us!”
Interest in music developed early
Drawn by both classical and traditional blues at a early age, Hoehn began developing his classical skills as a percussionist through personal lessons and in the high school band, but his penchant for the blues grew when he found his grandmother’s harmonica in the attic of his home.
Unable to find a teacher or someone who played the instrument in his hometown of Worthington, Minnesota, Hoehn turned to recordings of the Blues Travelers, Little Walter, Sonny Terry, Howlin’ Wolf and Big Walter Horton to develop his own brand blues music.
Creating the music he always wanted
He continued honing his instrumental skills while a student at Augustana College, then took his talents further through three McKnight Fellowships for Performing Musicians. Along the way, he developed his singing voice and discovered the live looping technique which allowed him to create the music he always wanted – a blend of classical music, world beats and traditional blues that some have dubbed “new blues” or “marimba pop.”
“Noah Hoehn is a fierce performer. His singular vision to unite the sounds of new blues and marimba pop through an incomparable live looping system creates a foundation of acoustic grooves that free him to sing and play at the same time – a musical style unparalleled in the world,” Polyard said.
In case of inclement weather, the concert will be moved from the amphitheater to the West Plains Civic Center theater.
For more information about Noah Hoehn, visit noahhoen.com.
For more information about the U/CP Department’s fall schedule of events, visit wp.missouristate.edu/ucp.