Bio-metric Experience Story

    Nashville based Colin O'Brien is a musical mutt. His guitar compositions harken to Leo Kottke, whilst his dancing feet groove in the wake of the late John Hartford, who O'Brien also sites as a primary songwriting inspiration. 

"…O'Brien bottles the lightning that was John Hartfords' engagingly off-center songwriting" -The Nashville Scene

Colin plays concert stages, festivals, clubs and private events throughout the United States and occasionally abroad, if she sounds good. His live shows feature his multi-instrumental virtuosity, amazing percussive dancing on his amplified board and his straight to the point songwriting, sometimes hilarious, always moving. 

His live shows have reached the level of remarkable.

“A great entertainer” -Tim O'Brien (No relation, dang.) 

Ironically Colin began his journey into music by failing the fourth grade snare drum coordination test. The conductor (Jack Horner) gave him drum sticks anyway. A drummer was born. In his teens he discovered Keith Moon, and that set him off and pounding. A bonified high school rock star, he went on to drum (as a minor) for legendary Detroit band The Frames  and then with award-winning Jugglers and Thieves, a nationally touring rock band also based in Detroit. Colin then  bounced forth and studied classical guitar at Cornish College Of The Arts in Seattle WA. where he was awarded second place in his first (and last) classical guitar competition, (The Seattle Guitar Society). To the possible chagrin of the awards committee, Colin spent his winnings on a pile of archaic (to him at the time) blues, American Fingerstyle and John Fahey recordings. Soon after he traded in his nylon string classical guitar for a howling 1971 Guild 12 string, one that he plays to this day.  


“With his 12-string guitar work recalling Leo Kottke and the spirit of John Hartford hovering over O’Brien’s banjo-fiddle-foot percussion stage presence, he offered something for everyone.”  -The Shepherd Express

“His rustic vocals convey more years than he has lived” -Billboard Magazine


Colin lives in the hills (well, in a house) in Nashville, Tennessee.