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Photo by Katharine Schroeder

Singer/songwriter Robert Bruey of Southold performs an original composition at Custer Institute's Open Mike Night, November 6, 2009

Southold based singer-songwriter, Robert Bruey, has created his own musical path in the North Fork with a style that he says is “honest and real, raw and meaningful and gritty.” With musical influences such as Dave Matthews, Johnny Cash, Damien Rice and Waylon Jennings, Bruey admits his music process is mysterious, even to him.

Bruey has written more than 100 songs and has two albums under his belt, with a third album debuting in March 2014. He said much of his inspiration comes from his childhood and he often gets his lyrics when he reflects on hard times in his life and his family.

Originally from rural Maine, Bruey decided to settle down in Southold with his wife, Dana, in 2009. He now performs regularly at venues not only in the North Fork but occasionally up-island and in the tri-state area as well.

Bruey will be playing Winterfest on Feb. 16 at Sannino Bella Vita Vineyard.

What North Fork locations inspire your music?

Robert Bruey: I love the view of the sound in North Mattituck

What do you think about Winterfest expanding genres by changing from “Jazz on the Vine” to “Live on the Vine”?

Robert: I think it is a good way to give people a choice… I love all kinds of music, but not all people do.

Do you like winters on Long Island?

Robert: I LOVE winters on Long Island, especially now that I live on the east end. I am from Maine originally so it can’t snow enough!

What can we expect to hear at your shows?

Robert: I like to mix it up a bit, at a winery I will play mostly covers; Beatles, Van Morrison, Coldplay, John Mayer, Snow patrol, Neil Young  fast and slow ones mixed in with a few originals.

How do North Fork audiences differ from other areas you play?

Robert: I think it’s a more casual atmosphere on the North Fork, but varies from venue to venue. Except for a few places most people seem to want to here relaxing music.

If you were elected supreme ruler of the North Fork, what would be your first order of business?

Robert: I would like to see a summer festival similar to NoFo but maybe with different genres mixed in.

Is there anything about the North Fork that you would like to see improve?

Robert: I would like to see less traffic, but it’s a sacrifice for the exposure to the local economies. I would NOT like to see any development…Sorry, the North Fork is an idea, a way of life, a feeling…When we lose the ability to keep things simple we become slaves to these economies.