donderdag 27 juni 2019

The Hackensaw Boys Live. Paradiso Amsterdam Monday 24 June 2019 with The Po' Ramblin' Boys

Photo: Wo.
How many times have The Hackensaw Boys featured on these pages? First the magazine and now the blog? They could well be the front runner. In 2019 the band toured the country again and I just had to be there of course.

As I already wrote recently in my review of the new EP, 'A Fireproof House Of Sunshine', there is a totally new The Hackensaw Boys with only one founding member left, David Sickmen. On stage they were joined by Thomas Olivier, who is a bandmember when the band is in Europe since the 00s, who plays banjo, mandoline and guitar. Whatever a song takes. As there is no use crying over spilled milk, I will not compare with past line ups, except state that Jimmy Stelling is my absolute hero where banjo's are concerned and always will be.

What was easy to note was that this band was at ease on stage together. The energy that is captured in many songs of The Hackensaw Boys was released in combination with a certain reticence. No full abandon here. It brought out more subtle parts of the music, aimed just a little more at the head and a little less to the feet. That said, the speed of playing in some songs makes my arm hurt from just looking at it. And I'm a guitar player. The players were having fun obviously with bringing their music to an enthusiastic audience. Fiddle player Caleb Powers, who told me he really is a mandolin player -he could have fooled me!, brings the melodies into the songs and sings Ferd Moyse's songs. They are still played, where songs by older ex-members no longer come by. Beau Dodson sings great harmonies to great smiles and by mixing the charismo with a drum kit gives the music an extra oomph in the deep end of songs.

The new songs stood their ground, especially 'Factory Blues' and 'Late Night Kitchen' stood out. (Read my review here: A cover of a Blaze Foley song about Ronald Reagan could have been written recently as the lyrics totally apply. In short, a great evening well spent.

Photo: Wo.
The Po' Ramblin' Boys followed The Hackensaw Boys and the other way around would have been best, except that now I wasn't home so late. This is a very traditional bluegrass band, hats for all, except the lady. In the first songs I listened to I could hear only the sort of country music that I do not like, the traditional kind. But to its credit, the band did capture me. It plays really well, extremely tight and in various styles. Regularly they had me confounded on where they returned to singing after an instrumental interlude. Where is the one or whatever with these guys, as to me it seemed sometimes just random where they started singing again. That said, this still is not my kind of music, but respect is paid where respect is due. This is some tight outfit.


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