Otis Gibbs

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Otis Gibbs
Otis Gibbs Photo.jpg
Otis Gibbs
Background information
Origin Wanamaker, Indiana
Genres Folk music
Occupations Singer-songwriter
Instruments Guitar
Years active 2002-present
Labels Wanamaker
Flat Earth
Website otisgibbs.com
Members Thomm Jutz
Mark Fain
Paul Griffith
Amy Lashley

Otis Gibbs is an American singer-songwriter, photographer, and podcaster who has independently self-released records outside the traditional record industry.


Gibbs is originally from Wanamaker, Indiana, a town outside of Indianapolis, Indiana.

"Uncle" Brisco, a man who was dating Gibbs' aunt and was recently released from prison, watched a young Gibbs while his parents were at work and took him to honky-tonks where Uncle Brisco would play the piano and the young child (somewhere around 7 years old) Otis would sing for tips. Gibbs loved the experience. "Brisco agreed [to let Gibbs continue to sing] but made the boy promise he'd never tell Mom and Dad what they were doing."[1]

Gibbs worked for over 10 years as a tree planter in Indiana.

Music career[edit]

SXSW 2009: Jovita's, Austin, TX
March 21, 2009 (Twangfest party)

Gibbs' songs feature themes about political and social issues. He has been compared to Woody Guthrie, Steve Earle, and Bruce Springsteen.[2][3]

Billy Bragg included Gibbs' song "The Peoples Day" in a list of "Top Five Songs with Something to Say", published in the Wall Street Journal.[4][5] Andy Gill of the The Independent wrote that there is a "authenticity and dedication in Gibbs' delivery which is somehow cleansing in its purity".[6]

Gibbs tours Europe and the UK regularly.


Year Title Label
2002 49th and Melancholy Flat Earth Records
2003 Once I Dreamed of Christmas Benchmark
2004 One Day Our Whispers Benchmark
2008 Grandpa Walked a Picketline Wanamaker
2010 Joe Hill's Ashes Wanamaker
2012 Harder Than Hammered Hell Wanamaker
2014 Souvenirs of a Misspent Youth[7] Wanamaker

Other activities[edit]

Gibbs does a regular podcast called "Thanks For Giving A Damn with Otis Gibbs" that features interviews with fellow musicians. Gibbs describes it as "a show that features your favorite musicians sharing road stories, tall tales and vague recollections. There’s no music, just lighthearted conversations." The podcast has been featured on iTunes’ “New And Noteworthy” and “What’s Hot” lists.

Personal life[edit]

Gibbs currently lives in East Nashville, Tennessee with his long time partner Amy Lashley, a singer-songwriter and children's book author. Both Indiana natives, they settled in East Nashville in 2007 and live a quiet life with Iris the Dog and Baby Kitty. Their neighborhood in East Nashville is full of musicians and bands.[8]


  1. ^ Wolgamott, L. Kent (April 12, 2012). "Otis Gibbs to bring his acclaimed singer/songwriter roots music to Zoo Bar". Lincoln Journal Star (Lincoln, NE). Retrieved 30 January 2014. 
  2. ^ Lewis, Randy (12 January 2009). "Album review: Otis Gibbs' 'Grandpa Walked a Picketline'". Pop & Hiss The LA Times Music Blog. Retrieved 9 July 2010. 
  3. ^ Lankford Jr, Ronnie. "One Day Our Whispers". Allmusic. Retrieved 9 July 2010. 
  4. ^ Maclagan, Kirsty (9 May 2009). "Folk singer Otis Gibbs comes to West Coker". Yeovil Express. Retrieved 9 July 2010. 
  5. ^ Jurgensen, John (30 May 2008). "Songs With Something to Say; Rocker Billy Bragg on His Favorite 'Message Music'". Wall Street Journal. p. W.2. 
  6. ^ Gill, Andy (28 May 2010). "Album: Otis Gibbs, Joe Hill's Ashes (Wanamaker)". The Independent (London). Retrieved 9 July 2010. 
  7. ^ Gibbs, Otis (Project date: Jul 22, 2013 - Aug 22, 2013). "Souvenirs Of A Misspent Youth". Kickstarter. Retrieved 30 January 2014. 
  8. ^ Cornell, Rick (July 2, 2012). "Otis Gibbs: Interview Recap". Americana Music Show. Retrieved 30 January 2014. 

External links[edit]