There seem to be a rash of Americana “super groups” making headlines these days. Lest anyone think that Trigger Hippy is jumping on the bandwagon, consider that they’ve been around since 2009. Singers Joan Osborne and Jackie Greene, along with Black Crowes drummer Steve Gorman and Nashville session musicians Tom Bukovac (guitar) and Nick Gorvik (bass), unleash a soulful fury.
One could call this a powerhouse jam session but that doesn’t do it justice. These are fully formed and taut rock songs with plenty of memorable hooks. Of course they infuse it with a truckload of Southern boogie.
Dry Land, Diarrhea Planet (from the Bloodshot Records release While No One Was Looking: Toasting 20 Years of Bloodshot Records)
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that we at Twangville are big fans of Chicago-based Bloodshot Records. How could we not be when so many of our favorite artists have released records with Bloodshot over the years.
To celebrate their 20th anniversary, the label invited a host of artists to cover songs that have been released by the label over the years. Here’s a gem among many, Nashville pop-punk outfit Diarrhea Planet applying their four guitar attack to a Waco Brothers song.
See Shawn’s take here.
Dallas-based Fauss writes songs that are warm and comfortable, the kind of songs that you’d like to hear on a Saturday night at your local bar. The performances here are driven by intertwined acoustic and electric guitars, with a touch of simmering organ and honky-tonk piano thrown in for good measure. Let’s call it a little bit country, a little bit rock and roll.
Here’s a rockin’ fun time featuring guest vocalist Rhett Miller.
The Memphis-based Kilzer has led a movie-worthy live. He has shifted from Hhigh school and college basketball star to major label recording artist and from recovering addict to ordained minister with a doctorate degree. These life experiences — and the world views they’ve shaped — flavor Hide Away. These are songs that a colored with darkness and oft filled with apprehension and pain, yet not without some positive views.
As if the songs weren’t strong enough on their own, they are brought to life by a murderer’s row of musicians, including Alvin Youngblood Hart, Luther Dickinson (North Mississippi All-Stars), Steve Selvidge (The Hold Steady) and Rick Steff (Lucero) to name just a few.
Journeyman guitarist Ford has a resume that would envy many an artist. From his years with the Black Crowes to time spent producing Ryan Bingham, he’s logged quite a few miles – both figurative and literal. One can hear those miles woven into the fabric of Holy Ghost. There is a refined weariness in his writing that fits well with his subtle and expressive sound of his guitar.
This young quartet from El Paso, Texas makes music has a rather eclectic musical ethic. An acoustic guitar is the centerpiece for songs that range from folk pop (“Thought I’d Let You Know”) to punk (“Highway Love”) and from blue-collar rock and roll (“Loser”) to Irish rave-ups (“Sailed Away”). It all adds up to one fun listen.
The North Carolina singer-songwriter has one of those voices. You know the kind — a voice that is magically warm and inviting. He wraps it around songs that are brilliantly crafted and hearken back to the classic pop era.
About the author: Mild-mannered corporate executive by day, excitable Twangville denizen by night.