Simon Balto is a writer of folk and alt-country songs from southern Wisconsin. His music draws from a range of influences, both musical and not. More than anything, the style and storytelling are especially informed by the hills of southwestern Wisconsin that were his early home, and by the people he’s met there and in travels around the country. An avid writer and reader, Balto's songs focus on narration: workers and lovers, mothers and sons, the dying and mourning, the prideful and the abused. His work has garnered praise from critics at No Depression and a range of other places. The Irish music publication Deadly Music! has compared his songwriting to top-of-his-game, Blood on the Tracks-era Dylan. The Chicago-based music curator Music Means Family said the following: “An unbelievable talent, his layered folk ballads are reminiscent of Baez and Dylan, Guthrie and Prine. There is a deeply satisfying component to each of his songs – a reminder of home, woodsmoke, and the first traces of your breath as winter begins to settle.” He has been featured on Big Top Chautauqua's Tent Show Radio, Daytrotter, and has supported and shared stages with a wide range of regionally and nationally acclaimed artists in recent years, from Jason Isbell to Field Report, Peter Mulvey to Communist Daughter, Count This Penny to Horseshoes & Hand Grenades.