Robbie Fulks returned to SMF to give a special performance. Fulks is an American alternative country artist originally from Raleigh, North Carolina but who is a longtime Chicago, Illinois resident. Fulks is known for his disdain of mainstream modern country and the country music industry. His live performances feature improvised arrangements of his original songs, off-the-cuff musical humor. He started the day off with a great set.
The highlight for me was Woody Pines & The Lonesome Two. Woody Pines & The Lonesome Two “Low-Fi sounds from weird America’s rural roots. Resonator guitar, high lonesome harmonica, upright bass, stripped-down drums and foot stomping twang.” Woody Pines has been playing and singing since he can remember. He left home with his guitar on his back and made it through 49 states before he was 19. After landing on the west coast, he co-founded a ragtime jug band, The Kitchen Syncopators, which sold thousands of their self-released recordings. The Syncopators performed everywhere from the streets of New Orleans to Seattle’s Folk-life Festival to the Oregon Country Fair. After several years of living and playing in New Orleans, Woody headed for the mountains of Asheville, North Carolina, playing old time music for dances, busking for tourists, and releasing his first solo cd, ‘Rags to Riches.’ Woody played shows all over the south, including a stop in Nashville for a guest appearance at the Grand Ole Opry with friends Old Crow Medicine Show. Today, Woody continues to find ways to reshape the old music, weaving new stories from timeless threads. He combines freak realism and vaudeville showmanship with the sincerity and grace of the rich, traditional landscape of roots music. Woody plays with foot stomping gusto, but knows when to croon a lazy mountain ballad. The Lonesome Two is Tim Peacock on upright bass and Bram Riddlebarger on his stripped-down suitcase drum kit. The full band sound is featured on Woody’s newest release, Lonesome Shack Blues. Woody is also available for solo performances. Check him out on the web.