Dignified Pet Services presents 'People in the Neighborhood'
Country singer Mo Pitney barely knows where he is half the time. Currently, he’s on a radio tour, introducing his music to some 167 stations. His Portland stop was #70.
“I’m on a plane every day during the week,” says Mo. “We’re rolling along, meeting radio stations, and playing on air or just hanging and playing for an audience, just getting to know everybody . . . and trying to stay awake,” he laughs. “But it’s a lot of fun.”
It’s easy to see Mo enjoys it. The “small-town country boy” raised in Cherry Valley, Illinois seems comfortable anywhere. His wiry frame eases into a room, chatting with anyone there, switching seamlessly from anecdotes to playing a little music. When performing, it’s as if he’s practicing and thinking aloud . . . with an audience that just happens to be there.
Growing up in family of country/bluegrass artists, Mo is a natural. He first learned guitar, then taught himself the banjo, bass, drums, and more. When his family decided to record an album, it got Nashville’s attention, and Mo’s career took off.
“I had always wanted to sing country music, I just didn’t know how to get my foot in the door,” Mo says. “So I came down and it wasn’t even a couple of weeks and I had a deal. Now I’ve spent the last two years writing and getting prepared for my record.”
Mo has written nearly 200 songs, 15 of which are planned for the record. His favorite subject?
“It’s always different. If I start writing about a particular subject matter too much, I’ll probably never write about it again. I’m always looking for something that’s never been said. There’s always something in me that wants more.”
When not visiting countless cities and writing songs, Mo breeds and trains dogs, something he’s done since childhood. He currently has three Brittany Spaniels, Duke, Duchess and Daisy. When his parents asked him at 13 what he wanted most in the world for Christmas, his wish was a Brittany Spaniel. They convinced him it couldn’t happen.
“Then Christmas came around and I walked in and under the tree was a female Brittany. I’m kind of a wimp, so I actually started crying,” Mo says. “I just wanted one so bad. Then my mom said she was going out to the car to get everything that went with her, and she came back with a male. Apparently, he had been the last dog and the runt of the litter, and though the place was a two-hour drive from our house, my dad had pulled over halfway home and called to ask if the other dog was still available. The lady said, ‘yes he is and he’s whimpering a little.’ My dad sighed and turned around.”
Mo’s love of dogs shows up in his music. His song, “Just a Dog,” about rescuing, raising and eventually losing his friend is guaranteed to make a pet lover cry, country music fan or not. Not all of Mo’s songs are tearjerkers, however. Many are about life, love, faith and, of course, dogs.
“I always tell people if I weren’t playing music I’d be breeding dogs or be a youth pastor somewhere,” Mo says. “That pretty much puts me in a box right there!”
About our Sponsor
Dignified Pet Services has served the Portland-area community for 13 years. In addition to their core business of cremation and memorial services, Dignified co-sponsors the beloved annual Service of Remembrance at The Old Church in downtown Portland, as well as serving as wonderful supporters and friends of pets and those working in animal welfare. Proprietors Michael, Randy and Avani live in Sherwood.
Jane Alexander is a promotions coordinator and junior copywriter at Entercom Radio in Portland as well as a freelance writer.