My Morning Jacket: My Mountain Story
The popular and eclectic rock band My Morning Jacket — Jim James (vocals, guitar), Tom Blankenship (bass), Patrick Hallahan (drums), Bo Koster (keyboards), Carl Broemel (guitar) -- hails from Louisville, Kentucky. The band recorded their first three albums — 1999’s The Tennessee Fire, 2001’s At Dawn, and 2003’s It Still Moves – at a rural Kentucky farmhouse that was converted into a music studio. For their hit-making fourth album, 2004’s Z, the band turned New York’s Catskill Mountains to record some of the songs that helped to make them nationally famous. Along the way, they gained fame and a devoted following for their critically acclaimed albums combined with explosive, no-holds-barred live shows. Their live performances, such as the four-hour 2008 Bonnaroo head-lining performance that is still celebrated by rock fans all over, have become legendary and have won them an ever-swelling following. They have on played on The Late Show with David Letterman and Saturday Night Live, performed with members of the Boston Pops, with whom they played two shows at Boston Symphony Hall, headlined many major music festivals including Coachella, Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, and more, and sold out countless rock venues. My Morning Jacket has released six studio albums and three live albums. For their most recent studio release, Circuital, they returned to their Kentucky roots and recorded the album in the gymnasium of a Louisville church.
While the band has gained fame, they've stayed true to their environmental ideals and have worked to foster environmental stewardship among their fans and at their shows, working with advocacy partners such as Rock The Earth to educate concert-goers on critical environmental issues, and playing in environmentally focused festivals such as the Forecastle Festival. In 2010, My Morning Jacket's JIm James collaborated with fellow Kentucky musicians Ben Sollee and Daniel Martin Moore to release Dear Companion, an album that explores their ties to the place they love and aims to draw attention to the problem of mountaintop removal coal mining and its impact on the people and heritage of central Appalachia. This summer while on tour, the band is donating a portion of ticket proceeds to various local environmental and social justice groups, including the West Atlanta Watershed Alliance and 826DC.
This is My Morning Jacket's Mountain Heroes message:
"We are My Morning Jacket. We want to see an end to mountaintop removal. We care about our mountains and Appalachia."