Walking for Pennies
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Walking for Pennies

Long Island City, New York, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2010 | SELF

Long Island City, New York, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2010
Duo Americana Folk




"No Such Place"

Listening to the sophomore album from Walking for Pennies just made me wish I lived in New York because this is a band I would love to see. Acoustic guitars, banjos and big harmonies…maybe it’s just the key to my heart but the 5 song EP has such a polished professional quality sound to it, really you need to check it out if you haven’t yet. It has the kind of hooks I could see belting out in my car at a stoplight but listen closely and you’ll hear the lyrics are about some seriously powerful stuff, the album title track “No Such Place” is inspired by the Lost Boys of Sudan.

The album itself seems to pull its roots from folk, bluegrass and soul. It moves from an upbeat swing in the intro song “You Will Stay” to a slow moving, and very powerful ballad in “Orphan Train” later in the album. The singing is beautiful throughout, and not just the lead vocals (which are mesmerizing) but also the big harmonies present in all the songs. You can hear an almost broadway musical-stage influence in some of the songs if that makes sense – the melody is present but the story is very present as well.

One of my favorite tracks on the album (although I really do love them all) is Hurricane. It is a great song and really sounds like something you’d hear on the radio – dare I say, Taylor Swift-ish (at the risk of possibly pissing off their fans). Fine if you don’t like that a different group that the album really reminds me of is Nickel Creek, if you’ve listened to them and like them you’ll love this album. I’ve listened to it on repeat now and I’m sure I’ll continue to and you will too.

BOTTOM LINE: A great folk/bluegrass album, amazing singing and inspiring lyrics.

SOUNDS LIKE: Nickel Creek / Taylor Swift

DON’T HAVE TIME FOR THE WHOLE ALBUM: Hurricane is my favorite, but check out the whole album - A Site For Your Ears

"Walking for Pennies in LIC"

Walking for Pennies are LIC-based duo, Neeley Bridges and Andy Jobe. They released their first album “Forget About Wonderland” in October last year after years of making their way as actors and musicians. Their name refers to the times when they have been literally walking for pennies as dog walkers, earning money to pay rent; a story recorded in Bridges’ song, “Who am I Supposed to Be”.

In December 2012 Walking for Pennies played at LIC Bar, in a benefit performance for victims of Hurricane Sandy debuting their single “Hurricane”; the proceeds of which go to Sandy relief.

On Sunday Feb 17th the duo expanded to a full band, with Neil Nunziato on drums, Pauline Pisano on piano and harmonies, Craig Akin on bass and Guy Cowan on guitar, appearing in their first ever show at the prestigious Rockwood Music Hall in Allen Street, Lower East Side. The band showed huge professionalism to an enthusiastic crowd who filled the venue, not an easy thing to do on a Sunday afternoon.

Bridges, like her partner, studied music at NYU and has been on the local music scene since; with involvement in musical theatre, writing and performing solo and with bands. She is a talented multi-instrumentalist, guitar, mandolin, flute, oboe, piano and clarinet. These days she most often sticks to guitar and mandolin. She has a clear and accurate voice, singing solo and offering strong interweaving harmonies to Jobe’s higher-register vocal offerings. In 2008 she released a solo album “Devil on my Shoulder” and has written four of the songs on the Wonderland album.

Jobe wrote the title track to their album. His background in the theatre has given him a gift for presentation, which, in combination with Bridges, makes for polished and well prepared shows. A guitarist and a singer, he shows the influence of James Taylor, but his musical theatre background gives him a variety of timbre that suits the range of music the duo perform.

“Forget about Wonderland” is an album that demonstrates the talent and real attention to detail of these two musicians. It is a carefully crafted selection of music of different genres, with a country/folk/pop thread; the addition of guest musicians make for a satisfying mix that sustains repeated listening, both as an album and selecting tracks to match a mood. Check out their website www.walkingforpennies.com for downloads. - LIC Spot

"Walking for Pennies "...a rich narrative of self-discovery...""

The duo of Andy Jobe and Neeley Bridges paid the rent for some time by walking dogs. Out of that experience came their band name, Walking for Pennies, and a rich narrative of self-discovery that is found throughout their debut album, Forget About Wonderland.

Having labeled themselves as a “mo-grass” group, which is a combination of Motown and bluegrass, Walking for Pennies’ music sticks to the acoustic melodies and rich harmonies that make up the latter genre, but with more of the former’s kick. The result is a record that perks up the ears with song structures and get feet moving to the beat.

The best example of “mo-grass” comes along with Truth Has Been Told. A groovy, blaring horn plays over a tightly-wound acoustic riff. The brass comes back in for the chorus, slowly growing in volume and intensity. Bridges’ vocals meet the right pitch between passion and anecdote, following those classic country examples of songs as stories.

While there is a good amount of this new style to be found, a lot of the tracks stick to the duo’s guitars and vocals. I Know Better starts the album with sharply strummed acoustic guitars and touches of mandolin that serve as a solid background for Bridges’ country-tinged voice. It builds to an upbeat, joyous chorus that serves to juxtapose the down-to-earth relationship troubles. This One’s For Me takes a gently plucked guitar pattern and matches it up with high-pitched mandolin playing as an intro piece, before transitioning into an acoustically strummed number.

One of the biggest standouts on this record is Black Picket Fences. Coming after the complex finger-picking of Nashville, this stripped back number focuses on some light guitar work, Jobe’s voice and some melancholy cello melodies. The cello in particular is a welcome addition after many songs of guitar and vocals. The track really starts bouncing after the first chorus, once the heavy drums pound their way into the speakers. The lyrics match the themes of Forget About Wonderland, which deal with the place of a musician in today’s society and facing your own reality rather than daydreaming about possibilities. Lines like “It seem pedestrian/to search for heaven/without knowing where or when/we’ll come face to face” drive this point home.

Walking for Pennies’ debut album is a very enjoyable affair that shows great potential for the future. Their combined style of Motown and bluegrass warrants further exploration on future releases, as does the addition of the rarely used cello. Even without those touches though, Jobe and Bridges have a dynamic songwriting partnership that really serves both of their individual strengths. They may Forget About Wonderland, but this album is worth remembering. - NoRipcord.com

"Walking for Pennies will be walking with pockets of cash"

Andy Jobe (vocals, guitar) and Neeley Bridges (vocals, mandolin) of Walking for Pennies have just released their debut, “Forget about Wonderland” and it fraggin’ rocks! I’ve been blessed to hear a lot of great tracks lately, but here I am at midnight penning a review on a record – when I have to be up at five-thirty for a 12 hour day – because it’s that darn good!
Andy and Neeley met in school in New York, briefly and again later when he was acting and she was working the chorus lines. Disenchanted with their lot, they turned to their instruments for solace and release. The duo took their name from the experience of walking dogs for “pennies” to pay the rent. They draw upon years of study, and practice to bring a majesty to the music that describes the longing of being an artist, the pains of just getting by and the joys of doing what one loves – no matter what.
Autobiographical songs with with just the right amount of that New York funk and Southern smoothness have me literally hanging on every word. As songwriters, Andy and Neeley display talent that rivals many of my favorites, from Prine to Hyatt, James Taylor to Jack Johson.

From simple acoustic guitars with a bit of Dave Matthews pop and flowing mandolin lines, to the brass – yes, real brass – to creamy electrics and strings, the sounds of this record are great. Expertly crafted tones blend perfectly to make a record that is a pleasure to listen to, as a matter of fact, I think I’ll do that right now. I really want to hear the ballad “Black Pickett Fences” again.
You’ll hear the craftsmanship in the music of the first song and the Nashville influence on the opener “I know Better,” a great up-beat song about everyone’s favorite subject. “This One’s For Me” is a song everyone can relate to and showcases Keeley’s talent for beautiful vocal harmonies.
I live just South of Nashville. At the moment I’m in a motel room in West Virginia, thinking about moving back to my birth state, and Keely sings “I’m gonna move to Nashville in the springtime,” how very serendipitous! Yeah, maybe I’ll just move on into Nashville with them.
Every one of the tunes on “Forget About Wonderland” is worth twice the price of admission to this storytime showcase. If you are one of those people that doesn’t buy whole records, just buy all the tracks individually and forget about the fact that they were an album (even if they are obviously meant to fit together) you’ll be glad to have these. I know I am!
I’m off to bed, now with visions of dropping my hammers and saws, and picking up my guitar. - Middle Tennessee Music

"Magic Happens When Two Talented Singer-Songwriters Join Forces"

New York is home to so many singer-songwriters that good ones sometimes get lost in the crowd. The reality is that the best artists from all over the country end up moving to NYC because that is where they know that they have to be to get noticed and get the break that they need. It goes back to the old adage “dime a dozen”. The key is to find a way to set yourself apart from the masses. One way is to combine your talents with a like-minded and talented individual. I found couple of talented musicians that did just that. Welcome to the world of Walking for Pennies.

The moniker is not just a clever name. It relates to a time when Andy Jobe (vocals, guitar) and Neeley Bridges (vocals, mandolin) were actually walking dogs for enough money to pay the rent, hence Walking For Pennies. These two talented songwriters met at a music theory class at NYU and then reunited at a production of Les Miserables in Vermont of all places. When they released that they could combine their skills to create something different than the everyday singer-songwriter, they were really on to something.

Now the team of Walking For Pennies has released their debut album Forget About Wonderland to a warm reception in the New York scene. The album was recorded and mixed at Ears & Gears Studios by Mor Mezrich. The album is filled with songs that feature the specialties of each musician such as ‘Nashville’ which features Neeley’s cheery vibrato voice and mandolin. ‘Black Picket Fences’ highlights Jobe’s ability to hold a note with his strong yet charming voice. The song jumps back and forth from mellow to aggressive taking the listener on an interesting ride. The album touches on a bunch of different styles that they seem to all do well. From the country tinged ‘Who I’m Supposed to Be’ to the jazzy ‘ Truth has Been Told’ to the almost alt-rock title track ‘Forget About Wonderland’.

Overall, Walking For Pennies has released a complete and impressive debut record in Forget About Wonderland. We recommend going to give it a listen at:


- Indie Band Guru

"Walking for Pennies - Forget About Wonderland"

The newly released debut album from Andy Jobe and Neeley Bridges seems, at first, to be like an easy peg: Heartfelt, kind of country-ish? Got it: 1970s singer-songwriter.

Put an ear to Jobe’s soulful and contemplative “This One’s For Me,” a song that’s starkly confessional but at the same time so very hummable — like a great old Jim Croce side, right? This spritely trumpet propels “Truth Be Told” even further toward this polyester era theme, as Bridges sings with the haughty vigor so closely associated with the decade’s newly empowered women.

The title track, too, might have been a lost Cat Stevens tune, with its gently undulating guitar signature and its flinty introspective message — but there is a narrative complexity, this dramatic musical sweep, that makes the song utterly their own.

Walking for Pennies, it quickly becomes clear, isn’t so easily pigeonholed.

Similarly, “Nashville” seems at first to be nothing but a front-porch picker, another story about someone who longs for more set to a comfy folk counterpoint. But as Bridges opens her voice up to the possibilities out there, to all of the roads she might travel, there follows this thrum of emotion — a very real sense of hope, but also a gritty sense of pride in having moved on.

“Black Picket Fences” continues these dark ruminations, sounding at times so completely defeated. “Who Am I Supposed To Be,” though, nicely rebounds — finding Bridges remembering, with no small amount of humor, how she ended up as a dog walker despite having a college degree. Fast forward a little bit, and this pair has emerged not only with a winkingly fun name for its band but also a smart album of songs to show for having survived the lean times.

Not everything on Forget About Wonderland, unfortunately, is so distinctive. Bridges’ “I Know Better” has an admirable sense of determination, but the duo’s rootsy undertow is only a brief distraction from the tune’s rather bland pop hook. Ultimately, though, that takes nothing from an album brave enough to include a story song like “The Frozen Man,” with its trickling stringed signature and writerly, well-conceived images.

Walking for Pennies may have just begun their journey, but I have a feeling they’re going to go a long way.
- Something Else Reviews


No Such Place - 2014

Forget About Wonderland - 2012

Hurricane (single) - 2012



Walking for Pennies started out doing just that- walking dogs for a modest income on the streets of NYC to support themselves as they edged their way into the modern Americana scene. Neeley Bridges and Andy Jobe initially met on September 11th, 2001 at NYU in a music theory class (that was cut short by the infamous attack on the twin towers) but never exchanged more than a few words until years later. In the summer of 2008 they met again in the green mountains of Vermont when they found themselves to be the only singer/songwriters in the cast of Les Miserables at Weston Playhouse. Both Jobe and Bridges had worked independently on other projects, but when they combined their voices and songwriting styles they found the sum to be greater than its parts and immediately jumped on the new collaboration. Walking for Pennies was born that summer and named when they returned to NYC and again began the daunting task of making rent as performers.

In 2012 they recorded their first album, the self produced Forget About Wonderland, in a basement recording studio in Queens. With New York as their home base the duo began exploring the rest of the country, including their home states of Ohio and North Carolina, and ultimately found like-minded musicians and industry professionals in Nashville, TN. In the spring of 2014 they released their sophomore EP, No Such Place, with the help of producer Dewey Boyd and the talented crew at Forty-One Fifteen studios in East Nashville. 

While their first album bounces back and forth between pop country and a more soulful 70s-inspired feel, their most recent EP showcases a mature, unique style that the group is proud to call their own. Banjo, mandolin, and three part harmony add a bluegrass flavor, but the heart of No Such Place is accessible, singable, and poignant. The title track pulls inspiration from the story of the Lost Boys of Sudan, and the group hopes to bring awareness to important humanitarian efforts such as United to End Genocide (endgenocide.org) as they share their music with the world. 

Band Members