The Big Damn Blues Revolution Tour
The Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band
Alvin Youngblood Hart, Jimbo Mathus
223 North Water Street
Lancaster, PA, 17603
This event is 18 and over
The Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band
Roaring out of the southern Indiana foothills comes Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band playing a brand of Americana and Blues that stands alone - Delta blues and hillbilly fervor combine with musical acuity sharp as razor wire - best know, this trio is a force to be reckoned with. The growl of a good truck engine, the fiercest passion for his country home and family and an uncanny ability to breathe new life into old forms of music give them a pedigree many Americana acts would kill for and an ironclad work ethic keeps them on the road 250 dates a year, playing for the people with hurricane force. Locked in with an audience, the band create their own community and welcome the crowd into it, transporting them away from their troubles to joyous release, the way great musicians have done for centuries. The Rev. J. Peyton, his wife Breezy and distant cousin Aaron "Cuz" Persinger are a living breathing embodiment of the traditions and hard work ethic native to their Brown County, Indiana home. Their new album Between The Ditches is a chronicle of
With a reputation for their incendiary live shows well established, The Big Damn Band set out to make the album that would finally capture the same heat. Recorded at White Arc Studio in Bloomington, Indiana, the album was produced by The Rev. Peyton and Paul Mahern (John Mellencamp, Iggy Pop), and mastered by Brian Lucey (Black Keys, Dr. John, Shins). For previous albums, the band had recorded live, straight through in the same mode as a live show. Between the Ditches came together more slowly, with care. "We approached it saying we were going to make a record this time, not just a recording," explained the Rev. He used a different guitar set up on almost every track, employing two '30s National guitars, a cigar box guitar, a custom shop Gibson flattop 1929 L2 and an Airline map electric guitar.
The primary amps are custom Weber amps made by Weber speakers – both are one of a kind. Their fifth album, Between The Ditches features a new level of craftmanship in both recording technique and songwriting. The Rev. feels that it's their best album to date."I'm very proud of this album, the songwriting and the playing." The guitar playing alone should put the Rev. in the same class with his much revered idols. The songwriting boasts an added maturity and runs the gamut in subject matter from the barn burning, tongue in cheek, "Shut the Screen", (where "It's too dang hot and the bugs are too dang mean") to the evils of strip mining, an issue close to the hearts of this Indiana born and bred band in, "Don't GrindIt Down". There seems to be a theme expressed throughout the album and stated clearly in their first single,"Devils Look Like Angels": "Devil don't live down in hell, the devil's right here doing very well".
" Burn up some backroads, drive up to the store
They just don't make 'em like this anymore"
Rev Peyton's first introduction to music was his father's record collection of blues-oriented rock. At age 12 his father gave him a Kay brand guitar, eventually purchasing a Gorilla amplifier once he learned to play. And play he did. He became infatuated with pre-World War II country blues, and a desire to learn the fingerstyle picking of artists like Charlie Patton. Fingerstyle refers to using each of the right hand fingers independently in order to play the multiple parts of a musical arrangement that would normally be played by several band members. Bass, harmonic accompaniment, melody, and percussion can all be played simultaneously when playing finger style. Keith Richards has said that the first time he heard Robert Johnson's recordings he asked "Who's the other guy playing with him?" Of course there wasn't one. When you listen to the songs on Between The Ditches you will be hard pressed to believe it is only one guitarist.
"Nothing's really free
It all comes with a fee"
Misfortune struck the Rev. early on in the form of a dehabilitating condition that caused excruciating pain in his hands. Doctors told Peyton he'd never be able to hold his left hand in fretting position again. But he persevered and when the bandages were removed, Peytondiscovered a new flexibility and greater control in his fretting hand that enabled him to play in the fingerstyle that he longed to play.
"If it's me with you
Then we'll get through"
It was during his convalescence that he met his wife to be, Breezy. "I was crazy in love with her right from the start". He credits Breezy with installing a confidence in his playing and his life in general that he had previously lacked. Breezy Peyton's explosive washboard playing, sweet back-up vocals and striking good looks didn't hurt their live show either. Completing the trio is cousin Aaron Persinger on drums. "He's a human metronome", says the Rev. Persinger's drum kit gives new meaning to the term 'stripped down' and features a plastic 5 gallon bucket, for which he has a sponsorship deal for replacements. With their line-up finalized the band sold everything they owned in a garage sale and headed out on the open road.
"I've been broke down (BROKE DOWN) from sea to shining sea
You've been everywhere, I've been broke down there
And three times in Tennessee"
In 2009, they toured opening for Clutch, an extensive headlining tour of Europe and began their relationship with the Van's Warped Tour, playing 12 dates in 2009 on the Kevin Says stage. They were on the entire 2010 Van's Warped Tour on the Alternative Press stage and they received the Best Band of Warped Tour award, voted by the crew, bands, and promoters. They've also toured with Flogging Molly, Rev. Horton Heat, Derek Trucks and Mofro just to name a few.
"Keep it between the ditches"
This band is fun sure, a lot of fun, but they are for real. From virtuoso musicianship to great
songwriting, Between The Ditches has got it all. All from a little Brown County, Indiana
band that's got the nerve (and the right) to call themselves, Rev. Peyton's Big Damn Band!
Alvin Youngblood Hart
The cosmic American love child of Howlin Wolf and Link Wray! Known as a "musician's musician," Alvin Youngblood Hart's praises have been sung by everyone from Bob Dylan to Brit guitar gods Eric Clapton & Mick Taylor.
Since the release of his 1996 debut recording, the all-acoustic BIG MAMA'S DOOR, Hart has relayed his eclectic musical message around the world.
A devout follower of the "no barriers" approach carved out by veteran performers like Gatemouth Brown and the late/great Doug Sahm, Hart aims to delight the masses and points to challenge the so-called blues purists.
BIG MAMA'S DOOR was reviewed with blessings by Playboy with the prospect that Hart "had the power to bring the blues to Generation X" also stating that "Charley Patton would approve of Hart's version of Pony Blues, and the cover of Gallows Pole is the coolest since Led Zeppelin's".
Based on the strength of his record debut and the allure of his live shows, Hart received five nominations at the 1997 W.C. Handy Blues Awards. He was nominated for Best New Artist, Best Acoustic Artist, and Best Traditional Blues Artist and his album (BIG MAMA'S DOOR) was nominated for both Acoustic Album of the Year and Traditional Album of the Year. He received the award for Best New Artist. Hart also received two Living Blues Awards that same year. The anticipated sophomore release of TERRITORY in 1998 gave a rousing tribute to all forms of American music and received the Downbeat Magazine Critics' Poll Award for Best Blues Album (though TERRITORY is not a Blues album).
The summer of 1999 found Hart teaming up with celebrated producer Jim Dickinson to begin recording START WITH THE SOUL, a record hailed as a new-breed Southern Rock classic and one that piloted Hart's return to the "sacred garage." START WITH THE SOUL was chosen by the New York Times as one of the top 10 releases of 2000, as well as the BBC's Blues Record of the Year.
In 2001 Hart shared Living Blues Magazine's best guitarist honors with fellow road dog Big Jack Johnson.
The 2003 release of DOWN IN THE ALLEY garnered a Grammy nomination. Despite critics' recurring attempts to suggest Hart was "best enjoyed when performing solo", Hart continued to diversify his audience by extensively touring as a member of Job Cain, a hard-rocking side project he assembled with guitarist Audley Freed (Cry of Love/Black Crowes) and Nashville musician Robert Kearns (The Bottle Rockets/Lynyrd Skynyrd). In August of 2003, Hart was invited to fill in for Taj Mahal for five nights in Tokyo as a member of Kip Hanrahan's Conjure, the world's longest running jazz poetry ensemble. Assembled to lend musical support to the words of Bay Area poet Ishmael Reed, Conjure featured the talents of tenor sax giant David Murray and original Meters guitarist Leo Nocentelli. Hart remains a member of the revolving cast and recorded with the group on BAD MOUTH.
In 2004, Hart received a Grammy for his philanthropic contribution to the compilation BEAUTIFUL DREAMER: THE SONGS OF STEPHEN FOSTER. All of the proceeds from the recording benefited American Roots Publishing, a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving American regional culture through literature and art.
In the summer of 2005, fortified in the wake of much recognition and determined to defy any stereotypes attached to his artistry, Hart released the self-produced (and personal favorite) MOTIVATIONAL SPEAKER a rock guitar free-for-all, paying homage to fallen and missing rockers like Phil Lynott and Sly Stone. Hart's songwriting, singing and electric guitar prowess are all championed on this project and showcase the versatility he continuously strives to offer his fans and profession.
In 2006, Hart collaborated with several Memphis area musicians in the Craig Brewer cult hit film "Black Snake Moan" by both serving as a guitar tutor to the film's leading actor, Samuel L. Jackson, and recording a duet with the film's female lead, Christina Ricci, for the film's riveting soundtrack. In the fall of 2006, Hart was invited to hit the road for two months with Rock-n-Roll legend Bo Diddley for what turned out to be Diddley's final coast to coast tour.
In April of 2007, Hart's extended and varied interests led him to influence his local educational arena by participating on a tour of Mississippi high schools as a member of the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz.
Hart then joined fellow notable string playing colleagues Corey Harris, Don Vappie, Keb Mo and Guy Davis and contributed to the uniquely progressive 2007 OtisTaylor record RECAPTURING THE BANJO.
Later that year, Hart was called upon to contribute his doyen knowledge of blues music to the Denzel Washington-co produced and directed film THE GREAT DEBATERS. Based on a true story about the black historical Wiley College debate team, the release of the film coincided with a nationally stepped-up effort by urban debate leagues to get hundreds of inner-city and financially challenged schools to establish debate programs.
As an avid roots music performer and connoisseur, not only did Hart fit the bill to record predominately on the films dynamic soundtrack, Hart also proved a natural onscreen fit for the role of a juke joint musician. Songs for THE GREAT DEBATERS soundtrack were comprised of remakes of traditional blues and gospel songs from the 1920s and 1930s and were hand-picked by Denzel Washington from over 1000 selections.
A personal career highlight occurred in the summer of 2008 when Hart met the late Irish guitar legend Gary Moore. Moore invited Hart, a lifelong Thin Lizzy fan, onstage to jam with himself and original Thin Lizzy drummer, Brian Downey. In the Spring of 2009 Moore requested Hart’s band as the opening act on a tour of Germany. Moore was seen offstage most every night with friends, cheering Hart's band along during their set.
In 2010 Hart joined forces with friends Luther Dickinson (North Mississippi Allstars, Black Crowes) and Jimbo Mathus (Squirrel Nut Zippers, Tri-State Coalition) to form "The South Memphis String Band". The fun-loving and regaling trio was quickly dubbed by the media as an "acoustic super group". Recorded in a borrowed radio station studio while the band was on its first road trip, their debut record HOME SWEET HOME was received with rabid enthusiasm. The 2011 Blues Music Awards (The Blues Foundation) nominated the record for "Best Acoustic Album". The group plans to release a second album in the spring of 2012.
When not touring solo or plugged in with his revered rock trio "Alvin Youngblood Hart's Muscle Theory", Hart enjoys researching, collecting, repairing and modifying obscure musical equipment.
Guitarist, songwriter, vocalist and producer Jimbo Mathus grew up in Clarksdale, Mississippi. He first caught the publics ear in the 1990s with the hyper-ragtime vaudeville act, The Squirrel Nut Zippers. Since then, hes released many recordings of his own in a style he describes as Mississippi Music. Basically, Mathus says, I combine the myriad styles of deep roots music in a type of alchemy. Blues, country, gospel and soul all go into the equation equally. His last outing called Knockdown South, was released on his own label and received much critical acclaim. It was voted number 2 for Best of 2005 by Honest Tune Magazine.
Mathus played a key role in Buddy Guys Sweet Tea (2001) and Grammy winning Blues Singer (2004) as guitarist and arranger. He also runs the Delta Recording Service, a studio based in Clarksdale, MS and is sought out by many artists seeking the old school style of recording. One such artist was Elvis Costello, who recorded his Grammy nominated Monkey to Man single in Mathus studio in 2005. He has produced two blues CDs that are nominated for WC handy awards in 2006; Duwane Burnsides Under Pressure and Big George Brocks Club Caravan. Additionally, he contributed vocals on North Mississippi Allstars 2006 Grammy nominated Electric Blues Watermelon.
All that being said, who is Jimbo Mathus really, and what is he trying to do to us? "I break down walls and stereotypes with my music. I confuse people. I use Mississippi music, which is renegade music at heart, as my inspiration and motivation. I use it as a tool to reach people, to express my own feelings and continue to express those that came before me. I keep the old stories alive while they help keep me alive".