Roughly composed of one part Rolling Stones, healthy doses of Dylan and John Prine, plus a whole lot of Nashville hot chicken grease, DADDY is but the latest iteration and manifestation of the long-running musical bro-mance between Tommy Womack and Will Kimbrough. Their Southern pop/rock band the bis-quits in the early 1990s was short-lived but much loved. And while they’ve collaborated here and there since then, only in DADDY has the Kimbrough/Womack chemistry truly been rekindled. Add to their guitar/vocal attack the all-star rhythm section of Paul Griffith (drums), David Jacques (bass) and John Deaderick (keys) and you’re looking at a Music City supergroup with writing and playing chops second to none. They will be just back from a current swing in Europe when they play the Roots stage June 9.
Another daddy has a role in this week’s show. And that would be the father of Nora Jane Struthers. Growing up in New Jersey, Nora Jane made traditional music with her dad Alan, a bluegrass veteran. They even had a band together for a while, and a few visits to old-time festivals in North Carolina and Virginia inspired Nora Jane to take break from her living teaching English to pursue music full time. She’s an alt-country chanteuse with deep country roots, and when her debut album comes out later this month it will remind some folks of Gillian Welch or early Emmylou Harris. Recorded by East Nashville acoustic master Brent Truitt and featuring some of Music City’s finest pickers, it’s got a warm glow and a homespun feeling. Definitely our kind of thing.
Another fetching female will join us this evening, and that’s Bay Area Americana artist Brigitte DeMeyer. Over three or four recent albums she’s attracted amazingly distinguished collaborators like Buddy Miller and Brady Blade and made distinctive music that leans hard on Southern soul and gospel for its inspiration. Her most recent is “Red River Flower,” made in Nashville with more impressive folks like guitarist Mike Henderson and Regina McCreary, whom we know well from Mike Farris’s group. DeMeyer’s appearance should evoke some hallelujah moments.
Another West Coaster, San Diego favorite Steve Poltz, will perform. He’s described his own thing as “engaging, twisted and prolific” and he’s got stories to tell from his days in the college radio band the Rugburns. We also welcome back The New Familiars for a return engagement on the Roots stage. This rocking, Charlotte-based acoustic power quartet thrilled us back in November with a sound loaded with soul and spirit. And I don’t know how we’ll find the time, but we’re also going to hear on this crowded night from veteran country music stylist Con Hunley. It’s one of those variety shows full of actual variety.
We hope you’ll join us.