Saturday was more blissful than a midnight bowla melted peanut butter, marshmallows and cheerios. It was epic. Musta drank the world’s weight in water and glistened it back out again.
Up until Saturday, I didn’t really spend much money, but hell, once I get a shovel in the merch hole…I don’t stop digging till I’m in a Vernsian pit. I spent what I brought, but I didn’t hit up the bar atm. That means WIN. But, yet again, I go leaping over magnificence. Can’t be hauling yer ass when I’ve only showcased a third of the music.
If Friday was bossin’ so hard Springsteen’s hanglows hardened, Saturday amped it to Roddy-Piper-They-Live levels of rad. Like, Jason Galaz you gotta be Tank Girl and Samuel L. Jackson and Johnny Cash’s threeway lovebaby, the misfit, badass, sincerity you got in you to pull this many fine and furious folks to one bill.
I am not exaggerating. Saturday was that good.
GatorNate and the Gladezmen – 11 a.m.
GatorNate is a coon-tail wearing ginger playing guitar, harmonica and a sampler accompanied by WillyMatt the Honeybadger on the drums. They’ve waded outta the Florida wetlands to get you bopping to their mad swamp hop sounds.
Who the fuck knew? GATOR ROCK? SWAMP HOP? SWALE SAMPLING? These things exist. My brain feels bigger. My creative field of vision expanded.
Muddy Roots – every year, every damn year – it inspires me. It makes me less afraid to go full-tilt on my own writing, because it demonstrates if you have the passion, drive and skill to get shit done and you go at it with iron tits and the expectation that it’ll be a hard road, folks eventually take notice.
Anais Nin said, “I will not adjust myself to the world. I am adjusted to myself.” Damn right. This is what Muddy Roots is – people creating their own genres, venues, record labels, wonders and worlds.
Left Lane Cruiser – Noon
Fort Wayne, Indiana, thank you for spitting out Left Lane Cruiser, a band so devilish nasty, it made a sunny afternoon feel grit-slicked as a gravel-slipped drunk. If you like Son House and the later work of R.L. Burnside, you’ll dig on the blues rock that Freddie and Brenn of Left Lane Cruiser throw down.
I want to see a burlesque show soundtracked by Left Lane Cruiser. Somebody make this waggle-hipping happen.
Hangdog Hearts – 1 p.m.
Currently in a solo incarnation, Hangdog Hearts features Austin Stirling’s exemplary capacity to play banjo, harmonica, bass drum and sing. Oh wait, and he’s a natural born storyteller. And he makes you want to dance. And even though he’s a one man band, he throws his whole body into creating full, rowdy, fervent songs that agnostically hint at possible higher powers that are as likely to look out for you as cut you loose.
And he makes gorgeous jewelry and is known to pass out free patches and GEEZ, I REALLY, REALLY LOVE THIS BAND. See him on tour. Buy his everything. But he doesn’t have an online store…so to buy his everything you need to SEE HIM ON TOUR or go to his facebook page and message him.
Rachel Brooke – 1:30 p.m.
I only caught the end of Rachel Brooke’s set on the main stage after moseying out of Hangdog Hearts with a sixteen ton smile. Ms. Brooke and a drummer elegantly enthralled the sun-dazed crowd.
Ten Foot Polecats – 2:15 p.m.
Do you know what a dirty shot is? It’s when you close out a bar and, after a full shift, you’re still so broke that the bartender – who hates your cocktail serving ass – buys you a drink, but because she hates you, she just empties the last sips of almost empty bottles, no matter what kind of liquor, into a pint glass. What you got is a hellborn bastard drink that you know you shouldn’t down, but do anyway. The dirty shot inevitably leads to a lost night – and a great trio to score your demise (and possible redemption) is the gutbucket soul of 10 Foot Polecats.
Then there were fried pickles. Yes, my darlings. My dears. My wanton hustlers and friends. FRIED PICKLES! Not spears, mind you, but SLICES of salty empyrean. Professor M. and I sat under a food tent, hiding from that cataclysmic orange orb, downing le bad bad food. I’m still drinking gd green smoothies to right myself from all the fried splendor. We were within earshot to hear Sean and Zander at the main stage.
Hellbound Glory – 4:45 p.m.
Yep. Hellbound Glory did it again. Made me smile. Made me swoon. Totally worth seeing live.
Dad Horse Experience – 6 p.m.
Dad Horse Ottn wants to lift your spirits with his banjo and foot-organ. You can’t throw a candle at the sun and think you’ve made the sky brighter, so, instead, Dad Horse goes into the dives, the basement parties, the sinpits and tentshows and, through a German interpretation of American roots gospel, makes the world a more better place.
…If Twin Peaks had a traveling preacher, it’d be the Dad Horse Experience.
Deadbolt – 7 p.m.
I really, really wanted to see Deadbolt. They are surf weirdos who play the occasional power tool. Seeing their deadpan, gallows humored rockabilly would’ve been filler to my bucket list…but…but…Joseph Huber was playing. I saw Deadbolt set up. I saw them continue to set up…and then I moved my ass over and watched Joseph Huber play.
Joseph Huber – 7:20 p.m.
GAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH, I LOVE JOSEPH HUBER.
::deep, calming breaths::
I am ok. Really. I’m ok. But, seriously, what a fine motherfucking poet that man is and he plays hella banjo and he seems to be the kind sort and he BUILDS FURNITURE and PAINTS. I’m not joking. Go check out his website and then, if you could please buy me one of these and one of these, I’d thank you mightily.
I can’t do it. I was gonna narrow it down to the top three Huber tunes you should try if you don’t know him already and I can’t. Four. I give you the above four…and that is only off his newest album. Do it. Listen. He plays the kinda music where me and my ShawnaBanana end up singing at each other in our awful, awful, out of tune voices and it is all ok, because the music is loud and people have arms slung around each other and everyone is swaying and the night feels right. Life feels good, even in all its inconsistencies and hardships.
I admit it. Here is one of the moments that I almost cried at Muddy Roots. I don’t know how or when it happened, but I have become a big ol’ softie. I now feel life more deeply, both the bitter and the beautiful. Listening to Huber, watching the joy of the crowd, being with new friends and old…the closest thing I can say it felt like was the best of times singing in church when the weight of the world washes out of you.
Goddamn Gallows – 8:30 p.m.
Ever wonder what Ol’ Scratch plays in Hell’s elevators? Look no further. The Goddamn Gallows are a gonzo carnie hobo band equal parts eerie, ferocious and innovative. Mikey Classic gives winking-eyed pirate face while belting out gutterbilly moans as Fishgutzzz beats the standup bass and plays foil to TV’s Avery’s lunatic miming of everything from jerking off to ODing while he plays (mainly) washboard and accordion. Baby Genius beats the drums and Joe Perreze plays banjo and if you see them live…you will never see the same show twice.
Muddy Roots goes nuts for the Gallows. NUTS. Actually every show I’ve ever seen the Gallows has gone nuts. Note specific to Muddy Roots...it’s a surreal thing…seeing six-year-olds rushing the stage to dance to a songs like “Waiting Around to Die” while the rest of the audience turns into a pit or slackjawed with awe.
The Monsters – 10 p.m.
Holy shit. The Monsters KILLED IT. Like motherfucking slammed that stage into submission with their red jackets, black lapels, matching turquoise guitar and bass and voodoo, rock’n’roll, um mau mau power. And even though they ripped the main stage to splinters, Beat-man was humble and apologetic saying the show was a mess (it wasn't) - re: busting two strings - which I blame on the guitar gods trying to keep balance in the universe. That much awesome in one fucking place probably could cause some kinda gd wormhole or alternate dimension Evil Dead skywarphole.
I was on the front line of nerdo wonderkids, dancing at the edge of the stage with Ms. Amanda and her mustachioed Joe and their lovely family. Professor M…well, he had the moonshine in him and one minute he would be behind me dancing and the next he was in the pit.
::breath comes in all fluttery::
I LOVE THE MONSTERS.
Black Flag – Midnight
Eh. I stayed for the first four-ish songs and it was basically a whole hell ton of a theremin over Black Flag songs and where the energy was up
and the crowd mightily enjoyed themselves, I just…I dunno. I think I would’ve preferred seeing Greg Ginn get all metal jazz guitar theremin in a whole new sideproject, but for whatever reason he didn’t want to do a sideproject with an occasional old school “Slip It In” moment, he went for a reunion tour.
I have no idea what else happened with the night – except that I damn for sure had some more jalapeno cheddar hush puppies. Frikkin delish.
In rad news, today is Saturday and in a coupla hours I get to go see Cutthroat Shamrock play at a Celtic fest about an hour south from me. Which means f this blogging s, for now. I’ll toss y’all Sunday’s music tomorrow.
Happy weekend, friends.