Interview: Shamblin Sexton

A few years back, stumbling into The Great Eastern, a salubrious pub at the bottom of Trafalgar Street in the heart of Brighton’s North Laines, my ears were met by Hank Williams’ unmistakable tones emanating from the end of the room.  There, stood in front of two record decks were two innocuous looking blokes, smiles as wide as the Mississippi, flicking through a pile of vinyl.  Tony Sexton, AKA Shamblin Sexton and Senor Mick, together under the banner of Whiskey Preachin, have been bringing the country to the people of East Sussex and serving up the grits ‘n’ gravy for last four years whilst slowly making their way through the 300 odd whiskeys behind the bar at The Eastern. Their trademark posters, beautifully designed by Chris Sick – essentially the third member of the gang – cannot fail to catch your eyes as you wander around town. It’s an impressive feat and one that warms the cockles like a swift nip of Elijah Craig. I hook up with Shamblin to find out more. Continue reading “Interview: Shamblin Sexton”

Interview: House Above The Sun

A chance encounter with the track Runaway Devil, an instantly addictive freewheelin’ guitar-led gem that literally jumped out of the speakers like some kind of flannelled maniac, led me to the London-based four-piece House Above The Sea. I soon discovered that this is a band that can both kick like a mule sonically yet charm your socks off with beautifully entwined dual vocals and a real poetic approach to songwriting. I really needed to investigate further. Five Hours North, their debut album, is out at the end of October so I took the chance to chat with the band about guitar tones, inspirations and their love of ‘alt-country’.  Continue reading “Interview: House Above The Sun”

Interview: Buford Pope

He’s the dude they call Buford Pope. The King of Scandicana, cooler than a dip in a fjord, he’s everything you’d want in roots rock.  Earle, Dylan, Springsteen, Cash, this ain’t no hipster chic or wannabe genre come lately – he’s butch, tough and rough.  Pope makes ‘chopping logs’ country and is more a  V8 stick shift kinda guy. Praise be to that!  Continue reading “Interview: Buford Pope”

Dirty Dozen: Rodney Branigan

Rodney Branigan has become known worldwide for his unique ability to play two guitars at once. While quite a spectacle in itself, the meat and potatoes of Rodney’s music is his ability to pen emotive lyrics and deliver them with a voice that is honest and passionate. One Seed is the first song of the upcoming album, The Clever Kid Cartel, and is a fair representation of his passionate, sincere and emotive style. Continue reading “Dirty Dozen: Rodney Branigan”

Interview: Ed Dupas

I love Ed Dupas’ 2015 record, ‘A Good American Life’. I must have played tracks off it on my radio show 50 times, so you know it’s a good day when something new from Ed drops through your mailbox. The latest ‘Tennessee Night’, banged out in 3 days and tracked live is an arse kicker of a record, “garage country” at its finest, owning it is a measure of how cool you are, just saying. Continue reading “Interview: Ed Dupas”

Interview: David Rawlings

David Rawlings is quite the guy these days. A still youthful picker with an extraordinary command of the roots and traditional end of US country music, Rawlings has been plying his trade for many years, always earning praise, accolades and generating interest in both the genre and his own personal take on it all. Surprisingly, perhaps, he also remains firmly footed and rooted in a bubble of modesty and humility that, frankly, is a rare thing in modern-day Music City, Nashville, where he is based. Continue reading “Interview: David Rawlings”

Interview: My Darling Clementine

Known for their sartorial elegance alongside their old school country ballads and barroom heartbreakers My Darling Clementine are one of the best bands the UK has offered the world in a good while.  Witty, charming and utterly engaging their stage show, and one hopes it is a show, as the two protagonists, Michael Weston King and Lou Dalgleish are married in real life  – owing as much to the traditions of Carry On as it does Tammy and George.  Their latest album ‘Still Testifying’ is out now on Continental Song City, and it’s doubtful you’ll hear finer. Continue reading “Interview: My Darling Clementine”

Interview: Emily Barker

Emily Barker is one of those names that has been around the UK Americana scene, since it was both identified as a ‘scene’ and as a distinct musical genre.  A pathfinder, a trailblazer, and first with her Red Clay Halo, then as part of Applewood Road a consistent purveyor of great music.  She stretches the musical parameters, and possibly herself with a wonderfully soul soaked new record, Sweet Kind of Blue, recorded in Memphis. Continue reading “Interview: Emily Barker”

Interview: Yola Carter

Just about the coolest thing in UK Americana right now, Yola Carter, is taking it to the Yanks, Carter is electric live and her sonic boom voice is a force of nature.  You want it real, can you handle it really real? Yola is it the real deal, the fuse is lit, stand well back.

You’re on a great run,  you’ve had a moment to look back? you must be pretty chuffed?  Highlights?   Normally I’m the kind of person to look forward, so I don’t get really overexcited about things, but last year was my first year. I went from not existing as an artist, taking three years out, looking like a loser to my peers, some vocalising their lack of faith that I could work solo- just me and a hack guitar, to winning my category at the Americana music Association awards and getting rave reviews and press in NPR, The Guardian and American Songwriter. Continue reading “Interview: Yola Carter”