Don Hooper and Steve Beckwith play a cross between Louisiana/ Texas and upstate New York style folk/country. Vocally, Hooper has a Johhny Cash/Willie Nelson style and Beckwith a Chris Smither/Jerry Jeff Walker style. While Don flat-picks and finger-picks, Steve weaves through each song with intricate lead riffs. The combination sets them well apart from other duos.
Two guitars, two voices, footstomp board, rack harmonica, vintage guitars, dobros.
Hooper and Beckwith celebrated the release of their new CD, "No Refunds" at Tatnuck Bookseller, Westborough, MA.
Congratulations on GrIndie Award
"RadioIndy is proud to present Hooper & Beckwith a GrIndie Award for their CD "No Refunds." A GrIndie Award is RadioIndy's stamp of approval that this CD is an excellent quality CD. Please join us in congratulating this artist on this accomplishment.
Impressive album featuring memorable lyrics"
- Eric and The RadioIndy.com Reviewer Team
"If there's anything Willie Nelson taught us, it's that down-on-your-luck tales put to rootsy Americana by hapless outlaws make for a solid country tune. Hooper and Beckwith blend Nelson-style country music with yankee folk-rock flare on No Refunds, the Shrewsbury-based duo's latest release. Songs with choruses that reminds us "It ain't love, it ain't money, it's the whiskey that eases the pain"? are tempered with lighthearted ballads like "Tore Down Man,"? which sees Hooper pining for a traveling loved one and lamenting "I've got three hungry hounds giving me the stare, I give them chicken teriyaki and a half-eaten burger." Where these are sad sack stories, "Ain't No Storm"? offers a rally cry. A former New Orleansean, Hooper sings "We've been knocked out, muddy water, driven from our homes, but ain't no storm gonna take our New Orleans." Who'd want a refund after hearing that?"
- David Boffa, Worcester Magazine
" 'No Refunds' by Hooper & Beckwith succeeds in displaying a dynamic blend between country, folk, and rugged blues. With impressive instrumentation and cut through vocal harmonies, this album gives listeners that true country/folk vibe. ?It?s the Whiskey That Eases the Pain? is the perfect example of the smooth, easy listening harmonies of Don Hooper and Steve Beckwith. But not only do Hooper and Beckwith bring listeners that appreciable vocal duo, but they also incorporate their well-played rack harmonica which complements the finger picking guitar on songs like "Ain't No Storm" and "It Ain't the Crime but the Cover-up." Their memorable lyrics and blend of instrumentation will keep listeners? attention throughout all 14 well-written tracks. "No Refunds" is well worth the listen for any true country/folk fan, and will leave listeners with a positive feel for this well-constructed album."
Don Hooper and Steve Beckwith play a cross between Louisiana/ Texas and upstate New York folk/country music. Vocally, Hooper has a Willie Nelson inflection with a low Johhny Cash voice (except when he sings high harmony) and Beckwith a coarse Chris Smither/ Jerry Jeff Walker style. While Don flat-picks and finger-picks, Steve weaves through each song with intricate lead riffs. They trade-off vocal lead and harmony, giving a unique feel to each song. The combination sets them well apart from other duos. Their live acts are rife humor and bickering back and forth, both during and between songs.
Don found his love of performing in upstate New York in the late 60s, playing in coffee houses and colleges to packed audiences. At the time he played tamborine on his foot, rack harmonica, and flat-picked along with belting out the vocals. He was known as the Woodstock Traveler. He was even mistaken for Dylan by tourists, and they snapped his picture in excitement as he played restaurants in Woodstock. Later he spent a summer in New Orleans, surviving by busking at Jackson Square.
After a long illness, suffering from Trigeminal Neuralgia, Don has finally come back to the music scene. He can't sit around and talk much, because the pain returns. But singing makes the pain go away. He met Paul Geremia while he was in Newport RI, and was taught fingerpicking by this icon of country blues.
Hooper's solo CD "Mr Songman," received very favorable reviews for his renditions of "Don't Think Twice" and "Mr Bojangles," and several country blues originals. Now with Steve, the duo puts a decidedly Texas slant on their music.
Steve picked up the guitar at nine. As he mastered his craft, he frequently sat in with bands, accompanying and playing solos for all types of music. He now handcrafts acoustic guitars for Beckwith Strings (beckwithstrings.com).
"No Refunds" has 11 originals, and 3 covers.
Hooper and Beckwith are currently playing the New England region, expanding their circle of venues. They have played at the Bolton 4th of July celebration, the Bolton fall festival, Green Rooster, Java Room, Savoury Lane, Tatnuck Bookseller, Great Brook Farms, Tennessee BBQ, Gael House, and others.
Willie Nelson, Jerry Jeff Walker, Guy Clark, Townes Van Zandt, Steve Goodman, Paul Geremia, Chris Smithers.
Bose PA, Fender guitar amp, vintage and homemade guitars