Tuesday, June 23, 2009 at Toad’s Place in New Haven, CT &
Wednesday, June 24, 2009 at the Music Hall of Williamsburg, Brooklyn NYC
WHADDA SHOW! The energy was off the charts! Lucky Tubb and the Modern Day Troubadours were fantastic! It’s a testament of how talented all of these musicians are to be so good so often. Every show since my first Hank III experience at the Knitting Factory in 2005 I say it’s the best show I’ve ever seen. Last tour I got to meet and hang with him, Joe Coleman and Bob Tyrrell on the tour bus. I can’t really see it getting any better than that. This tour brought the heat.
Lucky Tubb is handsome and charming and talented. He did a tag for The Full Metal Racket Show that my friend DJs for and it rocks. His set was tight and his musicians are fantastic. Natalie Page Monson got some pipes! Casey Gill on the Doghouse Bass is one cool guy. JW Wade on Lead Guitar nearly lit that thing on fire! And Eddy Dunlap played Pedal Steele like he was born to do it. They nailed the sets and we loved them for it. Such a great way to start a tour I’ve been anxious for. It’s been a hard ass winter and the dark songs on Damn Right and Rebel Proud pulled me through it.
As usual, Hank did not disappoint. I’m used to being front row and to the side of Joe Buck (if you don’t know who he is learn. now) but he’s no longer playing with Hank III (le sigh). So I planted myself front & center for both shows and it was quite a ride. At Toad’s place they had this asinine chest-high metal gate in front of the stage. Our ribs hit that thing so much from being moshed upon they hurt for days after. Aaah show scars. Gary came out and sang a new song with Hank called The Rebel Within. Then Lucky Tubb came back out to sing Family Tradition with Hank III. For those of you who don’t know their story, Lucky is the great nephew of the country legend Ernest Tubb, who had Hank Williams Sr on his Midnight Jamboree shows. Seeing the new generation sing a Hank Jr. song was fanboy cool.
Hank asked us what we want to hear and I knew he would do 3 Shades of Black so I asked for Cecil Brown. He looked right at me when I asked for it and then he sang it. The man just turns me into a 17-year-old schoolgirl with a crush. I’m also liking the devotion of the crowd. Everyone knew the lyrics. But as usual, most scattered before AssJack. The ones who stayed are getting more diverse. I remember when Mar and I would be the only girls in sight for the hardcore set. This time I had to squeeze in to get pictures of bloody Gary. Gary Lindsey is one of my favorite showmen. There’s something “Me Tarzan, You Jane” about him. Once he is in the mood to stage dive, there’s really no avoiding his massive bloody sweatness or his heavy boots to your head. The man is pure energy. Photographing him is nearly impossible as fans mosh and crowd surf to an ever moving and bleeding Gary. Manush Sami came to drum for AssJack and it was great seeing him play. Adam McOwen can fiddle his ass off and I have a soft spot for him because I met his mom at the Knitting Factory gig and she was there all proud with “that’s my son! that’s my son!”. Andy Gibson is on steel guitar. He looks like someone out of a gritty movie. He doesn’t say much but he is so good he doesn’t have to. Daniel Mason is new on Banjo and the kid looks half terrified but he doesn’t let it get in the way of kicking ass. Sean McWilliams is the new drummer for the Damned Band set and looks great whaling around the beats. And finally Zach Shedd (great name!) is the new upright bassist. He’s very good and can hold his own, I just think Joe Buck is the uppermost of the toppermost. If there is one complaint I have about the show, that is it. I missed the hell out of Joe Buck. He’s doing his own thing now and I love it. His stage presence is mastery and was missed.
All and all with ringing ears, kicks to head, bruised ribs from the gate, feet smashed and stomped, head-to-toe dirty hippy stink, voiceless, Gary’s blood in my hair, and miscellaneous bruises from moshers, jumpers and gyrators, as usual I had a hell of a time and cannot wait to do it again!