“Jo Henley routinely goes through paradigm shifts in both style and ambition and the music from their upcoming album is their most ambitious to date. A melodic blend of jam, country, folk, west coast rock floats through these well crafted songs about the existential human condition. Jo Henley might be one of the most underrated bands to rise out of New England in recent memory.” Bill Hurley, The Extended Play Sessions
"The music of Jo Henley (it's a band, not a person) has always been a cut above, superbly crafted rootsy rock with intelligent story-songs about real people. Campolieto's skill as a songwriter is such that most of the songs don't deal directly with the event, but express the feelings people in that situation might experience, memories they might treasure." Jay Miller, August 2, 2013, Patriot Ledger
Jo Henley is not a person
Co-founded by longtime musical collaborators Andy Campolieto and Ben Lee, Jo Henley is a Boston-based roots-rock band that has been winning over fans and critics alike since 2006 with their potent blend of rock, folk, country, and bluegrass. Campolieto’s and Lee’s mutual love of all forms of American roots music shines through in Jo Henley. New England publication The Noise says, "...the rhythm and poise with which the members of Jo Henley write and perform is exquisite. Touches of Robbie Robertson and the Band and all who followed in their footsteps echo throughout this collection. The range is beautiful. The lyrics and melodies have a very familiar feel throughout, as if we have dear friends in all these songs—a rare gift indeed."
In 2008, Jo Henley independently released their first full-length record, Sad Songs and Alcohol. Full of tattered tales of lost love and broken dreams told against a backdrop of acoustic guitars, fiddle, mandolin, banjo, train beats, and weepy steel guitars, Sad Songs and Alcohol caught on with roots and indie music fans across the country, spending close to 6 months on the national Americana charts' (AMAs) Top 100–without any label support. Over the next several years, the band toured up and down the East Coast and out west, building a passionate following along the way.
With each subsequent studio album, the songwriting team of Campolieto and Lee has further pushed the boundaries of the Americana genre, shifting from the jamband leanings of 2009's Inside Out, on which the band was backed by veteran members of Phish’s Trey Anastasio’s solo band, drummer Russ Lawton, keyboardist Ray Paczkowski, to the introspective, folk-flavored Mohawk. Live Jo Henley shows are upbeat, spirited events that showcase their mission to mix their carefully crafted story songs with groove-based improvisation.
The deep personal bond of Campolieto and Lee always weaves its way into the music. For example, the band's fourth full-length release, The Fall Comes Early, was born out of the sudden passing of Lee's father. The writing process was a cathartic way to work through a difficult time and culminated in what was a critical success.
While Campolieto and Lee do often perform as a duo, Jo Henley is predominantly a full-band experience backed by top-shelf players who become part of an ever-evolving family. The current lineup features Ari Rejman on drums, Kent Stephens on bass, and Amer Saab on keyboards. Bassist Tony Markellis is also a frequent contributor to both lives shows and studio albums, as is mandolinist/fiddler Jordan Santiago.
A decade ago, Jo Henley released its debut EP, Long Way Home, not quite sure where the road would lead, and here they are, ten years later, with their most ambitious record to date, 2016's Burning Down the Dark. Over a 9-song cycle that flows like a dream sequence, Burning Down the Dark chronicles the darkness of depression and the battle to find light. Much like the characters on the album, Campolieto and Lee continue their journey as Jo Henley as they explore the American music landscape.