Quotes & Friends



"I really wanted to make a recording that would be a Woody Guthrie experience for a new audience. A collection of songs, both familiar and rare that would bring Woody's material within reach of the ears of today's listeners. It was an awesome challenge to make an album of Woody Guthrie songs. Much more difficult than doing my own songs, because it was important for me to honor Woody through his music, not just record a collection of his songs. The story on 'Dance A Little Longer' is not about me co-writing a song with Woody, it's more like a celebration and aknowledgement of how timeless Woody's material is, and how well it lives on into the new millenium. Truth is truth, no matter when you say it."
Joel Rafael about Woodeye

"Joel Rafael is an artist that I met a couple of years ago as he began to work with my recording engineer Paul Dieter. Joel has worked for some years and survived as an artist with his own company. We're not sure how much more work two artists will be than one; after all, we view this approach to the record company as an extension of artist management. Because Joel's record is so elegant and so well made, and because we know it will do well with or without us, and more or less in the true manner of all true record company executives, that is to say as opportunists, we want to be involved. We're looking to get into the record company experiment a little at a time and Joel's record is the perfect next step."
Jackson Browne about Hopper

"In the society of illusion, reality must manifest itself. The story songs of Joel Rafael are that manifestation... the essence of minstrel."
John Trudell

"The stories Joel Rafael tells, and the emotional spells his music weaves, have depth and beauty becase they come from so deep in his heart, and pierce so deep into ours.... He says his music is 'a streak' in his soul, but while your listening, it seems more like the whole damn thing."
Dave Marsh

"Old Wood Barn is full of stories that, like many great folk songs, get handed down from one generation to the next. Rafael's daughter Jamaica plays fiddle throughout the album giving it an authentic generational feel."
Rob Bleetstein, Gavin about Old Wood Barn

"Posseses all of the warmth and timbre of Bob Dylan's, without the frequently annoying nasal whine."
John Calling, SLAMM

"Joel's lyrics unfold a touch of sadness with optimistic overtones... puts me back in Pampa, Texas, with Woody in the 1930s—a warm and wonderful feeling."
Mary Jo Guthrie Edgmon

"Rafael draws from real life experiences and avoids the frills."
Shawn Perry, San Diego Entertainer