When Cody Johnson’s Cowboy Like Me debuted in the Top 10 on the Billboard Country Albums chart in January 2014, jaws dropped in offices all over Nashville.
“I got a lot of ‘Who is this kid?’” Johnson says with a laugh two years later. “I love that. That was a new horizon. And I’m gonna work to make sure people know exactly who I am.”
Johnson does that from the start in Gotta Be Me, a follow-up project that’s loaded with solid country instrumentation and winsome melodies. In the first minute alone, he paints himself as a cowboy, raised on outlaw country, who drinks too much, fights too much and won’t apologize for having an opinion. By the time the 14-track journey is over, he’s shared his rodeo history in “The Only One I Know (Cowboy Life),” demonstrated his woman’s influence in “With You I Am” and paid homage to his gospel heritage in “I Can’t Even Walk.”
Johnson delivers it all with an uncanny confidence. His smoky baritone and ultra-Southern enunciations give him a voice as uniquely identifiable as country kingpins Jason Aldean or Tim McGraw. And he uses it to convey a Texas-proud swagger, a real-man charm and an unwavering honesty about who he is, where he comes from and where he hopes to go.
“I’m a God-fearin’, hard-workin’, beer-drinkin’, fightin’, lovin’ cowboy from Texas,” he grins. “That’s about it.”
The hard-workin’ part is key. The other parts are easily found in his music. It’s intense, focused, sincere. And when he takes the stage, there’s a Garth-like conviction to his performances. Johnson inhabits the songs, recreates their emotions because they’re so familiar. And he’s willing to lay bare those emotions because he’s always been willing to risk. He lives in the moment behind that microphone, the same way he rode bulls in an earlier day.
The BellRays hail from Riverside, California and have been putting on the show of their lives since 1990. Punk, rock and soul have been used to try and categorize what they do but some how isn't enough. Seeing is believing and this is a band to see. You won't forget it!
Since the release of dada’s groundbreaking 1992 debut Puzzle, the trio has created an array of songs boasting progressive rock musicianship, dazzling vocal harmonies and melodic power pop layered with inspired psychedelic and experimental rock impulses. Adding to the trio’s groundbreaking line of attack are the marathon-length shows that deliver on the promise that every performance is the only one of its kind.
Two decades after the Los Angeles outfit embarked on its singular journey, singer-guitarist Michael Gurley, singer-bassist Joie Calio and drummer Phil Leavitt are celebrating dada’s 25th anniversary with plans for a national tour deemed the “dada Forever Tour” in 2017.
“dada is about digging into our roots, examining and celebrating it.” Says Calio
Puzzle was released on September 8, 1992, and it didn’t take long for the band’s sonic imprint to find an audience. The album’s first single “Dizz Knee Land” found widespread airplay on alternative and mainstream rock outlets cracking the Top 5 on the Modern Rock Single's chart and pushing the album's sales to over 1,000,000 worldwide. The band was soon touring around the globe, opening for the celebrated likes of Crowded House, Depeche Mode and Sting.
“People always ask, ‘Do you still talk to each other after all these years?’ So that’s really why I wanted to commemorate it because no matter the size of the career if you can stick together and still have a desire to play music together you have accomplished something” explains Leavitt.
Dada was founded when Gurley and Calio began writing songs and performing as an acoustic duo in the late ‘80s. But from the beginning, their approach was unique amidst the onslaught of ‘90s bands featuring lead singers and mostly generic backing bands.
“Joie and I were both lead singers. But we really found quickly that harmonies were going to be a big strength for us,” recalled Gurley, noting both he and Calio are fans of Simon & Garfunkel’s pioneering harmonies.
Gurley noted that once they recruited Leavitt, they were able to blend the thunderous power of trios such as Cream with the artful harmony-minded songcraft of Simon & Garfunkel.
The success of Puzzle was followed in 1994 by American Highway Flower, featuring the ambitious “Ask the Dust” and astounding “Feet to the Sun,” dada has gone on to create a magnificent discography featuring a half-dozen full-length albums and an EP. The trio has also issued a number of solo efforts and offshoot projects along the way exploring a range of styles including folk, blues, jazz and rock. Gurley and Leavitt were both members of Butterfly Jones while dada was on hiatus in the early ‘00s; Calio has released several solo discs and with X Levitation Cult. Mike Gurley and the Nightcaps are a popular jazz group in Southern California.
Long-time and new fans of dada all have one thing in common; they are passionate about the band and have a deep connection with its three members.
Tickets for this event:
$15 Standing room only
$25 Reserved seat at a shared table
$120 Reserved front row table with 4 seats
TICKET HOLDERS WITH A TICKET TO JC BROOKS ARE WELCOME TO STAY FOR SINFERNO CABARET THE SAME NIGHT! (10PM)
JC BROOKS makes soul-infused, genre-bending music that is energetic and kinetically charged. The grab-the-listener-at-all-costs mashup manifesto has been captured to a T on the band’s new joint,. The Neon Jungle, which is set for an April 7, 2017 release via Rock Ridge Music. Their soul mashup version of Wilco’s “I’m Trying to Break Your Heart” was a nationwide jame released by Bloodshot Records as JC Brooks & the Uptown Sound, but with the new album they have dropped “the Uptown Sound” but continue as one powerful live band. Brooks himself describes The Neon Jungle as an album-length depiction of “one crazy, incredible night out.” JC Brooks has made a career out of delivering the goods, from club stages to the biggest festivals in the US and Europe. The live version of The Neon Jungle will be flowing from a stage near you.
“Enveloping stage presence and and palpable charisma.” - Rolling Stone
“JC Brooks looks and performs like a cross between Chuck Berry and H.R. of Bad Brains in their prime, but his skintight R&B and post-punk soul upend expectation of a retro act.” - The Washington Post
Many years and albums later, we are still on the go. In a time where bands take "breaks" in order to have reunion tours along with all types of marketing gimmicks, Guttermouth continues to tour much of the year with no plans on stopping. This facebook page is the most current information regarding band info for us.
Wheeler Walker, Jr. is a country singer and songwriter who wants to bring back the classic honky tonk sound and the glory days of outlaw country music, and he's determined to do so by writing songs that would have gotten him yanked off the Grand Ol' Opry broadcast in a matter of seconds. Hailing from Lexington, Kentucky, Walker spent decades on the outskirts of the music business through the '80s and '90s, playing small clubs and earning an insider's reputation as a talented songwriter. But as Nashville began embracing a more polished sound, Walker found it increasingly difficult to be heard in Music City. He landed record deals at three different major labels, but according to the artist, his music sounded too strong and his lyrics were too bold for country radio, and his habit of dropping mild expletives into this tunes led to him being dropped from all three labels without the completed albums ever seeing the light of day. By the mid-2010s, Walker had lost his patience with playing by Nashville's rules, and after meeting producer Dave Cobb, who has worked with the likes of Jason Isbell and Sturgill Simpson, they went into the studio and cut the album Walker always wanted to make. The album in question was titled Redneck Shit, and its first single quickly became a cult item that racked up impressive airplay on satellite radio and plenty of online spins. However, the song, titled "Fuck You, Bitch," was just as lyrically offensive as the title would suggest, which meant mainstream country radio ignored it at all costs. In February 2016, Redneck Shit was released by Pepper Hill Records (distributed by Thirty Tigers), and with songs like "Beer, Weed, Cooches," "Sit on My Face," and "Can't Fuck You Off My Mind," the album had something to offend nearly anyone, and Walker seemed poised to finally become a star in Nashville, despite his boundless contempt for the country music establishment and a terminal case of potty mouth. If Wheeler Walker, Jr.'s story sounds too strange to be true, that's because it is; Walker's long career and colorful back-story, as well as his music, was all dreamed up by comedian and comedy writer Ben Hoffman, who writes and sings Walker's songs and owns the trademark to his alter ego. Hoffman briefly hosted his own show on Comedy Central, The Ben Show with Ben Hoffman, and has written for the TV shows Archer, The Late Late Show with James Corden, and InfoMania. While Wheeler Walker, Jr. may be a fake, the Redneck Shit album and the "Fuck You, Bitch" singles are very much real, and Hoffman has given numerous interviews to music publications in character as Walker, sharing his apparently sincere opinions about the sorry state of mainstream country music, as well as Walker's epic past. ~ Mark Deming
Marshall Crenshaw y Los Straitjackets combines the shared sensibilities of a pop-rock maestro & a band of guitar-wielding masked marauders.
Marshall Crenshaw learned to tune a guitar at age ten and has been making music ever since. His first big break came in 1978 playing the role of John Lennon in “Beatlemania” on Broadway. Over the course of a career that's spanned nearly four decades, 13 albums, Grammy and Golden Globe nominations, film and TV appearances (Buddy Holly in "La Bamba") and thousands of performances, Crenshaw's musical output has maintained a consistent fidelity to the qualities of artfulness, craftsmanship and passion, and his efforts have been rewarded with the devotion of a broad and remarkably loyal fan base.
“Although he was seen as a latter-day Buddy Holly at the outset, he soon proved too talented and original to be anyone but himself.” - Trouser Press
Los Straitjackets are the leading practitioners of the lost art of the guitar instrumental. Using the music of The Ventures, The Shadows, Link Wray and Dick Dale as a jumping off point, the band has taken their unique, high energy brand of original rock & roll around the world. Clad in their trademark Lucha Libre Mexican wrestling masks, the “Jackets” have delivered their trademark guitar licks to 16 albums, thousands of concerts and dozens of films and TV shows.
“…novelty is a key ingredient, but it’s elevated by the band’s good-natured sincerity and skill.” –NPR World Café