Johnny Hickman (of Cracker)

Johnny Hickman (of Cracker)

Johnny Hickman is best known for co-founding the band Cracker in 1990 with David Lowery, his childhood friend from Redlands, CA, but his talents and musical styles run far deeper. His spirited co- writing and fiery lead guitar sound achieved platinum status with Cracker's alternative radio hits “Teen Angst,” “Low,” “Get Off This,” and “Eurotrash Girl.” Cracker released ten albums, and Lowery and Hickman together are seen as godfathers of the alternative music scene, who turned gently away from plaid-clad grunge in the 1990s with more countrified and bluesy stylings.
Hickman is also a successful and critically acclaimed solo artist with two releases to date: Palmhenge (recipient of NYC's The Village Voice's "Voices Choice" accolades) and the more recent critically acclaimed and successful Tilting. No Depression magazine called Palmhenge "wildly diverse - from the arena rock of 'Harvest Queen' to the Bakersfield country of 'Friends' to the splendid folk rock of 'Little Tom' and 'The San Bernardino Boy' - it blends those genres with a dash of alt-rock to create a surprisingly coherent whole."
Occasionally, Hickman ventured away from solo work and Cracker to spearhead side projects, including his Colorado-based outlaw country band The Hickman-Dalton Gang. Retired side projects include All Thumbs Trio (with moe. guitarist Chuck Garvey, and East Coast guitarist Gibb Droll), and Crazysloth, an Arizona-based band he formed while recording Palmhenge. Film and TV work to date include one full film score for the independent “River Red," placement of “Lucky” from Palmhenge in the FX series “Sons of Anarchy,” as well as the placement of Cracker songs in several popular movies and TV shows.

Thayer Sarrano

"like shoegazing with a twang, but there’s a maximalist epic thing going on, too. It’s rare that a singer is able to balance synthesizers with a slow, Southern vocal palette, and it’s almost like inventing a new language of song. Well, here it is, and it’s gorgeous!” – FlyPaper

"It’s rare that a song strikes so perfect a balance between foreboding and sensual, but Thayer Sarrano gets it just right on “Shaky,” the title track from her new album. The tune is a study in contrasts, pitting hard edges against the soft allure of suggestion as Sarrano wraps her whispery drawl around a flat, forceful rhythm while vaporous tendrils of steel guitar float past." - Paste Magazine

​"Sarrano can morph from angel to devil in the same song. The looming atmosphere of dread and submission conjured on Shaky turns over a new page in Southern Gothic storytelling" —Pop Matters

"there is an aura of “southern gothic” via twangy guitars, deep woodsy echoes and a rhythm like cautiously trudging through those woods. But she also exudes a patina of the urban, opiatic tenor of ’90s gaze-girls like Opal or Mazzy Star." - CMJ

"A siren of the cypress swamp, Athens, Georgia’s Thayer Sarrano beckons you into the darkness on the throbbing “Touch My Face.” Evoking the mystical side of Stevie Nicks, overdriven guitars guide the listener through meandering paths that follow Sarrano’s smoky coos to what one can only hope is a mystical communion." - Bucketful of Nails

"Thayer Sarrano is a force to be reckoned with in the ever-fertile Athens, Georgia scene, having worked as a touring and session musician with Cracker, Camper Van Beethoven, T. Hardy Morris, of Montreal, Dave Marr, Kuroma, and David Barbe, among numerous others. This haunting track is taken from her upcoming third album, Shaky, a tour de force of Gothic Americana...We love it." - Big Takeover

“Pitting a murky, ominous, lumbering arrangement against her ethereal voice, with its consciously mysterious dearth of affect, Sarrano crafts a sound that is hauntingly eerie. Bringing this palette to a canvas that includes country, psych, Southern Gothic, even industrial, it’s easy to imagine her scoring True Detective‘s first season.” – Elmore Magazine

Sarrano’s dreamy songwriting often gets labelled as psychedelic, but her poeticisms are so spiritually minded that transcendental might be a better descriptor”- Immersive Atlanta

"You know sometimes you can just feel another world at the same time, maybe it is some higher self or just being more connected," asks Athens, GA-based THAYER SARRANO rhetorically about the inspiration for her new album Wings Alleluia which is set for release on March 29, 2019 via The Guildwater Group. Deeply poetic and musically pastoral, her fourth album is an exploration of textures and melodies reinforcing the title that Americana UK bestowed upon her as “The New Queen of Shoegaze.”

The follow-up to 2015's Shaky, Wings Alleluia displays the layered tapestry she musically weaves that Huffington Post called “a Southern-psych dreamland, bottling up ghosts and bringing them to life through her ethereal hymns." From the moody opening track “O My Soul” that tickles the lower registers while Thayer’s otherworldly vocals soars above, to the guitar-led meditation “These Arms” which traipses over a backwoods-ian twang, to the dramatic “White Shores”, the album exists on an almost transcendental level, a mindset that she subscribes to. Thayer explains, “I’ll be dealing with whatever is happening in front of me or the emotion of a beautiful or terrible situation, and the lyrics that I’ll get for some reason usually tend to come more from the abstract higher place because it provides more clarity.”

A multi-instrumentalist – she is a classically-trained pianist and also plays pedal steel guitar, oboe, and percussion, Thayer has been composing instrumentals since she was a child while also feeding her visual creative outlet through paintings, drawings and sculpture. Uniquely finding lyrical inspirations from her own artwork, it allows her to tap into her emotions and internal dialogue better than writing a linear storyline. “I have always done a lot of paintings and drawings - sometimes little sculptures - that help me translate something,” she explains. “For this album, there were a lot of fragments of drawings that would help me create a lyric, so my sketchbook is filled with drawings that inspired lyrics throughout the album.”

Since 2009, she has released three LPs and toured heavily, headlining tours in the US and Europe, as well as supporting Drive-By Truckers, Television, Robyn Hitchcock, Camper Van Beethoven, Cracker, Nicole Atkins, The Whigs, she has also been a featured guest vocalist at a Big Star’s Third show in Athens amongst other things. Her songs have been featured on network television, in the Netherlands' Groninger Museum, and she won the Flagpole Music Award for Music Video of the Year (2016) for "Shaky." Last October, she released a 7 inch with a book of drawings for the stand alone track, “I Will Never Be Used to Your Beauty,” with a cover of Leonard Cohen’s "If It Be Your Will" as its b-side, featuring producer and artist Andy Lemaster.

Her new LP will be released on March 29, 2019 and features the Athens Cowboy Choir, T. Hardy Morris, Justin Collins, Parker Gispert, Billy Bennett, and more on backing vocals.

$15.00 - $20.00

Tickets

Who’s Going

Upcoming Events
The Walnut Room - Walnut Street Location