Born in the small town of
Paxton, Nebraska, he moved to various places in the Midwest during his
childhood due to his father's military career. Following his time at
Austin Peay State University, he eventually settled down in
Tennessee, where he met some local musicians and began recording.
The initial recordings he put to tape eventually became his debut release,
Dressed Up Like Nebraska. Released to critical acclaim, it allowed him to tour
and begin performing full time, eventually releasing a second album, Home, in
2000. His songs would later be featured on a variety of television shows and
In 2002 Rouse released Under Cold Blue Stars, his first for Rykodisc.
Following a tour with
Guster, he would release another album, 1972. A concept album of sorts, in
the style of songwriters from the time of his birth, it was released in 2003. In
2005, he released Nashville, which featured the single "Winter in the Hamptons".
In 2006, Subtítulo, was released, which corresponded with his move to Spain.
Along with his normal full-length albums, Rouse occasionally releases
featuring demos and alternate takes on his personal Bedroom Classics label. The
volumes are usually limited to small numbers in release, and for sale only
through his website or at live performances. In 2007, Rouse released a
duet EP with
Paz Suay under the moniker
She's Spanish, I'm American.
Rouse opened for
John Mayer on a string of dates from January 25 to February 3 for Mayer's
winter 2007 tour.
A new album, Country Mouse City House, was released July 2007. The album was
promoted by a US tour in September and October, followed by a European tour in
November and December.
In April 2008, Josh announced his official website www.joshrouse.com will
become Bedroom Classics Closet Archives, where for a yearly subscription users
can download rare and unreleased recordings in MP3 format. The first three of
these releases are a complete live recording of December 7th 2007 performance at
The Shepherds Bush Empire in London; 4 additional recordings from an April 20th
2006 KCRW radio performance with a string quartet (the rest of this performance
is available of the digital EP 'Guitar and Strings') and the 5 track Bedroom
Classics Vol.3, featuring 4 new original compositions and a cover of Mother Love
Bone's Chloe Dancer.
ALL MUSIC GUIDE - "Rouse sounds perfectly at ease, as if he
were just playing for fun with no tapes rolling."
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY - "Persistently gorgeous"