Traditional roots/country mixed with Exile On Main St. era Keith Richards. For a time,
The Backsliders were the hardest rockin’ hard-core honky-tonk band
on the planet.
Honeydogs - Replacements
style abandon one minute, then the sweetest ballad you ever heard the
next… and they let me mumble
my way through “Torn & Frayed” with ‘em one night!
The Honeydogs are a perfect rock-n-roll band.
Derailers - The songs,
the playing, the presentation…
band sets the standard for the roots/country movement.
They are, quite simply, a beautiful thing to behold.
They received the loudest applause that I ever heard at Jack
Rip Rock - You have to
have been there...
Ford - IMHO, the best
band to emerge from Charlotte since Fetchin Bones.
Their demo tape stayed in my player for months.
These boys are somehow coming up with a batch of original songs that
are just plain better than anybody else’s.
Miller - Bill Miller was
the classic case of an artist who nobody was familiar with, coming out on
the stage and blowing the crowd of 25 away.
His guitar playing was at times like Leo Kottke, and the images he
painted with his lyrics and poetry and traditional Indian flutes were spell
He was the truest
artist to ever hold forth on the Jack Straw’s stage.
Kinney & David Franklin
- Rare is the soul who can do what Kevn Kinney can, with just an acoustic
guitar and a song…
Van DeLecki’s - Back
in the 80’s North Carolina produced some great pop bands, and The Van
DeLecki’s are heirs to all that.
Bryan Shumate is a mad scientist, and what Jamie Hoover doesn’t
know about pop production doesn’t need to be known.
Aqualads - 20 surf &
spy instrumentals in 50 minutes makes for an average song length of just
less than 2 minutes 30…
is just about what it should be!
best new Charlotte band since Lou Ford.
They “retired” the surly Jake Berger from the lineup, but not
before absorbing many of his teachings.
The beautiful AquaNets rule!
- They’ve mixed it up a number of ways through the years but it always
comes out rootsy and hard rockin’.
Ferster is a monster showman!
Gladhands - The
Gladhands opened for The Records and were another example of a truly great
(but relatively unknown) band playing to a small, but appreciative,
had the depth of Pet Sounds era Beach Boys, which to those that know, is all
that needs to be said.
Rice - Primarily a
producer of great note (Big Ass Truck), Ross is the Jamie Hoover of
His band played in the
Todd Rundgren vein and I hate that we were able to book him but once.
Rank Outsiders – Gigi
Dover is better than most of the singers she’s been compared to,
and there are few in Nashville that can hold a candle
could get the most beautiful raw tones out of his telecaster, and bass-man Tom Kuhn was every bit as animated as Bill
Wyman, and drummer Ray Mitchell could chew more gum than 10 men! I saw the
Rank Outsiders put on as good a show as anybody ever did at Jack Straw’s,
more than once.
- Jolene is not afraid to evolve, and they have to be the top drawing
Charlotte band of the last few years.
worked it hard, been persistent through ups and downs, and they’ve
remained true to real music through it all.
Congrats on the Sire deal boys!
Store Indians -
They’re as good as the Belmont Playboys, which is a supreme compliment in
Rev. Billy C. Wirtz -
The Rev. is most known for his Southern satire, but it’s his boogie woogie
blues piano that does it for me.
services should be attended at least once a year.
& John - Complex pop
arrangements, beautiful, powerful, and alluring…
Fleming McWilliams was a siren if ever there was one, and Fleming
& John is one of those bands that it’s ridiculous to try to write
Urban Shakedancers -
Hard-edged blues rock from the Black Crows camp.
They broke up just when we were starting to love ‘em.
Blue - He’s a lot more
than just the harp solo on “Miss You.”
Ass Truck - Big Ass
Truck slammed Jack Straw’s from the get-go and holds the record for the
biggest crowd we ever had.
sound was cutting edge, yet thoroughly infused with their Memphis roots.
Folds Five - We had Ben
Folds Five before many people outside of Chapel Hill had ever heard of them.
Bob “BobZilla” Davis told me to book ‘em and that’s what I
This was a tremendous
show in spite of their manager!
Black Family - Gina
Black, the doghouse bass player, wore the shortest skirt, and had the
nothing to do with the music, but who cares!
Evenings with this wild rockabilly outfit from Chicago came to be
- It’s sad but true…
of our best all-time shows were in front of the smallest audiences, and
Vallejo was one of them.
Their hometown, Austin,
TX must surely be the greatest live music city in the world.
Lee & The Sly Dogs -
Phil Lee carries around more great songs in his back pocket than all but a
very few songwriters come up with in a lifetime.
- Always a New Orleans gumbo party!
9811 - Simple, completely unpretentious, and fun…
exactly what a live rock-n-roll band should be.
Mighty Senators -
There’s a lot of funk out there, but only one All Mighty Senators.
Extraordinaires - These
guys play Chuck Berry right.
McCorkle - Lee McCorkle
has super-human energy.
play the right songs, for all the right reasons, and they draw a great
Terry Anderson Band -
From The Fabulous Knobs, to The Woods, to the Yahoos, Terry picks great
bands to be in.
Jumpstarts - Not at all
just another ska-type band.
Jumpstarts’ gospel and R&B roots run mighty deep, especially
considering how young they are.
Kirchen & Too Much Fun
- Bill Kirchen has my vote for being the best electric guitar player to have
ever graced the Jack Straw’s stage.
Johnsons - Son Volt got
the acclaim, but The Johnsons made a better record.
Marc’s Brother -
Mersey Beat era vocals are something you don’t hear much of anymore.
V-roys - Steve Earl
knows a good band when he hears one!
presentation will not become a lost art as long as the V-roys are working.
Johnny Hyde Quartet -
Seems like every time I start to think that hardly any of the bands are
rockin’ real hard anymore, along comes a group like JHQ.
JHQ rocked, and they rocked hard, and I would have had them back at
Jack Straw’s ASAP.
Skinee J’s - Another
show that only about 25 people saw at Jack Straw’s, but what a show! Their stage antics proved to be just what we had heard
Caribe - They had
everybody dancing like crazy people!
was Salsa and
Merengue at its best.
Dollar Pistols -
Straight-up, hard-core roots country.
Two Dollar Pistols opening for The Derailers was the best show that I ever
Uma Jets - They were all
over the local radio at the time of their show with us and it was just one
of those good nights…