Most musicians wear many hats, but Stephen “Mojo” Mougin wears more than most. Best known as a member of the Sam Bush Band and a sought-after instructor, he is also an award-winning producer and engineer, a label head, mentor, songwriter, band coach, and more. Mojo’s commitment to high standards and dedication to everything he works on have made him an in-demand partner and collaborator for any creative endeavor in the world of acoustic music. He is that rare musician that can help grow a band or artist from developing talent to professional quality performer; and shepherd artistic visions from one end of the creative process to the other.
Always a vocalist, Mougin grew up playing and singing in bluegrass bands around his home in rural Massachusetts. As he grew as a musician, he would often play mandolin as well. He studied music education with an emphasis on voice at University of Massachusetts Amherst, and after graduation went to work as a 7th-12th grade school music teacher. He would eventually leave the northeast for Nashville, and a touring job singing and playing mandolin in a bluegrass band.
In 2006, Mojo was invited to go to work for bluegrass and newgrass pioneer Sam Bush, on guitar and vocals. He’s still in that role, appearing at top festivals and shows across the country. In addition, he’s one half of Nedski & Mojo, a long-running duo with 2018 IBMA Banjo Player of the Year Ned Luberecki.
Offstage, Mojo keeps busy with a diverse array of musical endeavors – producing and engineering new projects, planning releases, shooting top-notch instructional videos, and more. In 2005, he founded Dark Shadow Recording in his home studio. It’s now a full-fledged record label, with a growing string of artists and hits. His IBMA honors include Sound Engineer of the Year and the Momentum Award for Mentor of the Year, in addition to the awards for Dark Shadow artists and recordings.
His debut as a Bluegrass Country host is just the latest in his collection of diverse experiences that make Mojo a “total package” musician, and a powerful creative collaborator.