Who, exactly, are the The Norway Rats? They’re a band of Pacific Northwest heavy hitters with a longtime roster that includes accordionist/keyboardist Jenny Conlee of the Decemberists, guitarist/producer Chet Lysterof the Eels, bassist Jesse Emerson of Amelia, and Casey Neill (who, in addition to releasing solo material, often moonlights as a member of The Minus 5).
Jerry Joseph is a musician who lives in Portland Oregon, but he’s often gone. He’s been inducted into the Oregon Music Hall of Fame but is still rather obscure to a lot of people. He plays well over 150 shows a year in the usual places. Across America. Sometimes in Europe, Mexico, and Central America. Then there’s these other places he plays—Lebanon, Israel, Kurdish Iraq, India, and Afghanistan. All over the Middle East, often in war zones and refugee camps.