Jonathan Byrd & the PICKUP COWBOY

“...a folk singer with the heart of a rock 'n' roll band.” — K. Oliver, Free Times

Jonathan Byrd is a preacher's son, a Gulf War veteran, and an award-winning songwriter from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, known for literary, outsider songs that have become campfire favorites. Multi-instrumentalist Johnny Waken cut his teeth on electric guitar in Pittsburgh with rock legend Norm Nardini, opening for The Blues Brothers Band on their Red, Hot & Blue tour in 1992. More recently, Waken joined North Carolina theatre troupe Paperhand Puppet Intervention, contributing to scores for nine shows and winning 4 Indy Awards for best original music.

Jonathan Byrd and The Pickup Cowboy are musical gunslingers, vaudevillian hucksters, and old-fashioned tent revivalists. Between heartbreaking ballads and heart-lifting sing-alongs, the Cowboys entertain and get audiences involved in the show.

" of the top 50 songwriters of the past 50 years." -- Chicago Tribune


Jonathan Byrd and The Pickup Cowboy

“Jonathan Byrd doesn't sing songs; he sings truth.” — Mare Wakefield, Performing Songwriter

“Jonathan Byrd swings from the roots of American music...He jumps between gutbucket blues and tender ballads, empathetic work laments and sympathetic character studies...Byrd shares the often-missed, always poignant tales of the small people that make this world such a big place.” — Grayson Currin, The Independent