5 Weekender questions with Joe Belle

Lemont musician Joe Belle, who will perform during The Freq’s Live @ 5 with the Beautiful Mood Band, recently answered five Weekender questions.

Q: How long have you been playing?

A: I’ve been playing guitar and bass for around 17 years, singing and writing songs for 11 years. I picked up the banjo a year or so ago, and in a way I think that’s come to define a new sort of sound for me.

Q: How do you describe your sound?

A: There’s what I refer to as my old sound, which is more mellow and soft with a classical guitar influence and smoother, quiet vocals. The newer sound I think of as marking the time I really strived to figure out the banjo and rack harp. When I started writing songs with that ensemble I noticed that I began to project my voice more and really jam out with it. So it’s become more of a mountain folky blues-rock sound.

Q: Which musician — alive or dead — do you most wish you could share the stage with?

A: My all-time dream concert would have to be Van Morrison live in Belfast, Ireland. When I think about it that would probably be the gig I’d be most thrilled to play as well.

Q: What’s your favorite song to play live?

A: “Mountain Moon Risin’ ” is a really simple and fun song and I love adding more and more accompaniment to it. I collaborated on a few verses with my mom on the back porch where I first got the inspiration for the tune. To me, that makes it extra cool.

Q: Where can people hear your music?

A: joebelle.bandcamp.com or facebook.com/joe.belle.songwriter.