BHS Alum Sarah Rudy's Band "Hello June" Releases First Full-Length Album, Performing at Mountain Stage with Larry Groce

By Julie Perine on October 07, 2018 via

Featuring Sarah Rudy on guitar and vocals and Whit Alexander on drums, “Hello June” has established itself as a third millennium Indie rock band with 1990 undertones. The group’s sound – heavy with meaningful riffs which some say are reminiscent of The Cranberries, R.E.M and Modest House – was founded on old-school country and the desire to combine tones, textures and other elements so that something unique can be brought to the surface.
Rudy, a 2005 graduate of Bridgeport High School, shares her musical background and the inspiration behind her music.
“My grandfather taught me how to play guitar and while I was learning, we played a lot of Johnny Cash. years later when I started seeking my own records, I took to the rest of the Carter family. June Carter-Cash, I always felt, was underrated and sort of stood in the shadows of Johnny,” she said. “Hello June is my attempt to shine some light on not only June Carter, but women who have felt shadowed in general. I think it’s about time for that.”
Based in Morgantown, Hello June has released two projects featuring original material; the EP “Spruce” – titled after Morgantown’s Spruce Street, where in 2008 the talent of Rudy and Alexander first came together - and the brand new full-length, self-titled album, on which Bud Carroll adds bass talents and record producer.  
Through venues across the region, the West Virginia band has delivered its music – described by National Public Radio as “bright, blissful Indie rock that shimmers.” On Nov. 11, Hello June makes an appearance at Mountain Stage with Larry Groce at Charleston’s Culture Center Theater.
“Mountain State is a West Virginia institution when it comes to the arts and something that brings national attention to our musical
community,” Rudy said. “It’s an honor to be able to take part in the show as well as to represent the creative voices that exist in our state.”
Though faced with the opportunity for national attention, Rudy still doesn’t think too much about “being a musician.”
“I just am,” she said. “Music moves me and I want to be part of the community that furthers that creativity and environment. It means the world to me when someone says that my songs mean something to them – that they were moved by something.”
Rudy was playing guitar while attending BHS, but she wasn’t involved in music through school.
“I never had a desire to be in the marching band and the few boys who played in bands were way too cool for me,” she said, laughing. “So, playing in a group wasn’t even a consideration.”
She’s glad she went her separate path, she said.
“I think if things had been different, my perception of life and music would be much different now,” she said.
She’s always taken to both music and visual arts. In fact, it is the latter through which she began experimenting with color, tones, feels and textures; a process present in the world of music also.
“I liked spending time alone, creating a world from nothing,” she said. “This is how I feel about music, too. I’m always trying to make a creative sonic space that is loaded with textures and concepts and that fill a mind and bring a person (or me) to a new thought or a new place. I like being the designer there.”
Just released Sept. 28, the new album is available on iTunes, Google Play, Apple Music, Spotify and Amazon Music. In addition to the lead single, “Mars,” tunes include “Stranger,” “Candy Rain,” “Less than Nothing,” “Problem,” “War,” “Momma” and “Handshakes,” all penned or co-penned by Rudy.
“Hello June” was featured as part of the 2018 NPR Slingshot class, a designation given to exceptional up-and-coming artists. One of the six tracts on “Spruce,” “Dance” was featured in the March 2017 edition of NPR’s Heavy Rotation series.
Local musician Annie Neeley Kirkpatrick, also a graduate of BHS, has been following Rudy’s career.
“Sarah and I met a couple years ago through a mutual friend at one of her shows in Morgantown - 123 Pleasant Street was the venue,” she said. “I loved her music immediately. She and drummer, Whit Alexander, have an amazing dynamic on stage and their songs are brilliantly written and arranged.”
The fact that Paste Magazine gave their debut album 8.5 out of 10 is a huge deal, Kirkpatrick said. So is the Mountain Stage gig.
“A nationally-syndicated NPR show which is broadcast on 200 stations nationwide will enable Hello June to be heard by millions of listeners,” she said.
Doors open for the Nov. 11 Mountain State show at 6:30 p.m. with show time at 7 p.m. Tickets are $20 (preorder) and $35 on show day. Tickets can be purchased by calling 877-987-6487 or HERE at
Learn more about Hello June and keep up to date at its Web site HERE.

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