Acoustic Song Swap with Shooter Jennings & Jason Boland

Acoustic Song Swap with Shooter Jennings & Jason Boland

Julie Roberts

Fri · December 15, 2017

Doors: 8:00 pm / Show: 9:00 pm

The Southgate House Revival-Sanctuary

$20.00 - $22.00

This event is 18 and over

Shooter Jennings
Shooter Jennings
Make no mistake about it, Shooter Jennings has never been one to allow expectations, boundaries, genre or ideals dictate the direction of his art. From the moment he burst onto the scene with his debut album Put The O Back In Country it was clear that he had a style and a vision all his own that would separate him from the leagues of cookie-cutter artists out there. Along with his debut, 2006's Electric Rodeo and 2007's The Wolf brought critical acclaim and continued to elevate Shooter to his own unique place in music and culture.

In 2008, Shooter left Universal South records and formed Black Country Rock, his own brand and label which he would begin releasing under. He then released Waylon Forever, an album that began with Shooter and his father, country music legend Waylon Jennings, having fun in their home studio in 1996, and being completed with Shooter's then backing-band, the .357's, supporting the late singer through a rock and roll romp of epic proportions.

But it wasn't until 2010 that we began to see the real Shooter. Black Ribbons, described by the LA Daily News as "...one wild, paranoid, anti-establishment mash-up of psychedelic theater," was an expansive futuristic concept album featuring the voice of master horror author Stephen King as 'Will O' The Wisp,' a controversial late night radio talk show host who was in his last hour of broadcast. The album paints a grim picture of a government-controlled future stripped of its right to free speech and controlled by fear. Black Ribbons has been praised by many for its increasing relevance in the current state of the world. On the record, Shooter and the .357's masqueraded as fictional band Hierophant, an anti-N.W.O band who Will O' The Wisp chooses to play throughout his final show. Although it flew mostly under the mainstream radar, the album has gained a cult following and often is regarded as Shooter's magnum opus. Shooter even programmed and designed a web-based adventure game which took place within the world he had created with Black Ribbons to coincide with the album and build upon its storyline.

In 2011, Shooter briefly moved to New York City, assembling Brooklyn-based band The Triple Crown and released Family Man, returning to his country songwriter roots and painting a deeply personal picture of his family life. Family Man was released on March 3rd, 2012, and Shooter hit the road touring in support of his latest release.

During the recording sessions for Family Man, as in life, things began to shift and change and The Other Life began to take form. Over the duration of 2012, Shooter and The Triple Crown finished work on The Other Life, and Shooter and long time video-collaborator Blake Judd began planning an expansive film counterpart to the album. Shot across Tennessee, Kentucky, Nevada and California, The Other Life film paints a story of isolation, temptation and rebirth through visual storytelling. As an album, The Other Life sees Shooter using all the colors of the pallets of previous recordings, and bringing them together to make his most diverse and interesting album to date. He enlists the help of friends and icons alike, Austin Texas madman Scott H. Biram shares vocal duties on the Steve Young penned "The White Trash Song," Patty Griffin blesses "Wild and Lonesome" and Black Oak Arkansas' Jim Dandy preaches alongside Shooter in the Black Oak Arkansas lost gem "15 Million Light-Years Away." But it is with the closing "The Gunslinger" that we see a portrait of a man hell bent on making art his way no matter who may try and get in the way.

In 2012, Shooter also began work producing records for other artists. On March 12th, the same day as The Other Life's release, Lexington, KY dirt rock band Fifth on the Floor will release Ashes & Angels, the first of three records Shooter produced the previous year. Jason Boland's Dark and Dirty Mile will follow, as well as a yet-unnamed record with Reno's Hellbound Glory.

In addition to his music, Shooter has been a DJ on SiriusXM's Outlaw Country channel for seven years and counting, his show broadcasting Saturdays at 6pm EST and replaying Sunday and Thursday. Shooter has developed the show as a platform to play many underground roots artists that otherwise see no exposure to the masses. In 2011 he also developed GiveMeMyXXX.com and MoonRunners.com, two resources to expose this type of music using his influence and platforms.

In the long run, in his short time here Shooter has been a very prolific and daring artist. Dangerous in his disregard for rules put upon him by the greedy. Deceptive in his unpredictability. Bound only by the progressive evolution of music and controlled only by will and determination, Shooter Jennings will never be able to placed upon a shelf or chained to a simple concept. But as dreams and nightmares continue to blossom and reality continues to crumble, there is comfort to be taken in the fact that artists like Shooter still care about art and disregard the rigid restrictions put upon it by corporate slave-drivers and the mainstream gatekeepers.
Jason Boland
Jason Boland
It’s admirable when a musician gets back to his roots, there’s no questioning that. But in a lot of ways, it’s even more admirable when an artist has no need to do that – having never lost touch with those roots in the first place. Jason Boland falls squarely into the latter category, having spent the better part of the last 15 years entrenching himself in the so-called “red dirt” of his native state of Oklahoma and adopted home in Texas and while spreading his musical branches to cover a remarkable amount of territory.

“I’ve always thought it was important to keep one foot in tradition and the other pointed in the direction you want to go,” says Boland. “I didn’t invent the G chord, so I’m standing on the shoulders of the giants that did, and on the shoulders of some great songwriters that have come before me. I’m using an old stencil, but adding my own colors.”

On their new studio album, Dark and Dirty Mile, Boland and his compatriots use a wide array of hues to illustrate 11 songs of rejection and redemption, dark clouds and silver linings, all assembled in the rough-hewn manner that’s earned him an ever-growing fan base – a following that’s snapped up more than a half-million records over the past decade and change.

Dark and Dirty Mile is a song cycle of sorts, one that finds Boland seeking – and finding -- beauty in life’s often-overlooked places, learning tough lessons through experience and overcoming obstacles with the help of others. That’s evident in the title track, which opens the album with a vividly drawn emotional landscape strewn with moments of regret and missed opportunities – but a clear bead on a clear horizon.

A similar dichotomy rolls through “Electric Bill,” a slow burn of a honky-tonk tune that conjures a picture of a man with an overdrawn checkbook in one hand and the hand of a loved one in the other – a sentiment he credits to his wife, who he says, reminded him that, “if everything is taken away tomorrow, there’s still love and hope in the world.”

Boland presents that sentiment without a drop of Hallmark saccharine, however. He doesn’t sweeten these tunes with easy studio tricks or the sort of pop trickery so often heard on Music City productions these days. The surface is anything but slick, and the sinew that runs through songs like the organ-tinged strut “Green Screen” and the high lonesome desert tone of his take on Randy Crouch’s “They Took It Away” lends a tone that’s ragged-but-right, ideal for Boland’s always-incisive lyrics.

“People don’t always expect to have a lot there in terms of lyrics,” he says. “Society says ‘if it sounds like this, you have to do songs about that.’ But if you just try to fit things together in the most simple way possible, you’re just trying to manipulate people, and I’m not interested in doing that.

“I think of myself as being in the Oklahoma tradition in the same way as Woody Guthrie – those of us who came up in Tornado Alley can all trace our lineage back to Woody.”.

Boland has been mining that territory for pretty much his entire career. Bowing in 1999 with the regionally popular Pearl Snaps – a first teaming with Lloyd Maines, who Boland cites as one of several seminal influences on his sonic vision – the Stragglers built a rabid following from the Panhandle to the Gulf Coast. Over the intervening half-decade, the band would team with similar kindred spirits – from Billy Joe Shaver to Dwight Yoakam compadre Pete Anderson to the late Bob Childers – to create an uncompromising body of work, as whip-smart as it is body-moving.

“We’ve always been lucky enough to work with people who feel the same way we do about things,” says Boland. “The world doesn’t always make sense, but you meet people around the campfires who will be there for you. That’s the big secret, 99 percent of people will share and break bread with you when times are hard.”

Boland himself says that he started to figure things out in earnest around the time he and the Stragglers went into the studio to record 2008’s Comal County Blue, a set that, as Country Weekly put it, “vividly chronicle the thoughts of a regular guy trying to make sense of the world and only occasionally succeeding, while keeping one eye on the reasons he keeps trying.”

That disc brought Boland’s songs to a wider audience than anything he’d done in the past, but the momentum was slowed a bit by his need to take several months off to recover from surgery to remove a polyp from his vocal cord. He took the setback in stride, and now says, in retrospect, “it was a good thing in some ways, since it helped teach me to really sing and broke me of the habit of yelling – which is an easy habit to develop if you come up singing in Texas honky-tonks.”

By the time 2011’s “palpably redemptive” Rancho Alto (to quote the Austin Chronicle) came around, Boland had a firm rein on his instrument, which had grown into a burnished, evocative baritone, and further honed his pensive-but-not-pedantic writing style – all of which comes to heady fruition on the Shooter Jennings-produced Dark and Dirty Mile.

From the steeliness of “Only One,” with its unflagging belief in love in the face of adversity to the wistful regret of the album closing “See You When I See You,” that strength shines through. It emerges in the two-step friendly rhythms of “Nine Times Out of Ten” and it burrows deep into the soil on the soulful swing of “Lucky I Guess” – songs that evoke the sight, smell and taste of the red dirt of his home territory.

“The t-shirt sellers love that phrase ‘red dirt,’ because it’s so simple,” says Boland. “But it fits. It was coined by the people making the music – rust in the ground, blood in the dirt. It’s real and it’s where I come from – and what I refuse to give up, no matter what.”
Julie Roberts
Julie Roberts
With her deep, blues-soaked voice that poignantly captures the pain of the wronged and forgotten, Julie Roberts has quickly become a favorite of the fans and music critics alike.

The daughter of an engineer and accountant, Roberts has been singing as long as she can remember. She performed at every opportunity, including class musicals, summer camp productions and beauty pageants. During junior high and high school, she spent her weekends playing festivals in the Southeast. She spent summers working at music shows in Carowinds, a theme park in Charlotte, N.C., and Dollywood in East Tennessee. She attended the University of South Carolina-Lancaster for two years before transferring to Nashville’s Belmont University to focus on her music. She performed in local clubs and restaurants until graduation, after which she landed a job as the assistant to Luke Lewis, Chairman of Universal Music Group Nashville. Without telling any of her co-workers, she began working during her off-time with producer Brent Rowan, who eventually played Roberts demo to Lewis without telling him who it was. Floored by the demo, Lewis asked to meet the singer, so Rowan directed the surprised music executive to the young woman sitting just outside his door.

Entertainment Weekly awarded her self-titled debut CD an A, calling it one of the most auspicious debuts in years. The New York Times said Roberts aching and resolute hit “Break Down Here” was one of the year’s best country ballads. Spotting her talent early, CMT selected Roberts to be the first artist ever to appear in “In the Moment,” the music networks hour-long documentary on the making of a star. The album was certified gold and led to two Horizon Award nominations from the Country Music Association, Top New Artist and Top New Female Vocalist nominations from the Academy of Country Music, as well as a Breakthrough Artist nomination from the CMT Awards. She delivered two memorable performances on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, was chosen over artists in all musical genres to sing the Good To Go theme song of the television show Good Morning America and joined pop superstar Rihanna in a Clinique HAPPY campaign.

Roberts followed this with the equally critically acclaimed sophomore release Men & Mascara, joining with veteran producer Byron Gallimore (Faith Hill, Tim McGraw, Lee Ann Womack.) Showing her maturity as an artist, vocalist and writer, Roberts co-wrote four tracks on the CD. Acclaimed music critic Bob Oermann called the title track and first single “captivating in the extreme.”

After a few years of non-stop touring, appearances and walking on some of the nation’s most famous stages, Julie took some time away from the spotlight to focus on herself. She moved to Hollywood, CA…living on her own, studying acting and spending much time on an ongoing project of writing a screenplay based on her life with the writer of the award winning movie Coal Miner’s Daughter, the story of one of Julie’s inspirations, Loretta Lynn.

After nearly a year in California, Roberts knew it was time to return to her love, making music. She moved back to Nashville with a newly revived confidence and passion to create. Shortly after her return to Nashville, the devastating flood of May 2010 left Julie and many others without a home. The flood recovery stalled the release of her third album by a year. By June 2011 though, Julie had aligned herself with some of Nashville’s elite songwriters and musicians, focusing on what she loves best…those emotional and heart-felt songs for which country music is known. By doing so, she released her first independent album, “Alive,” on her own label, Ain’t Skeerd Records.

The Washington Post defined the album by calling it, “an album in which she traffics in familiar heartbreak but delivers her lyrics with a little more fire in her lungs. The music is striking.”

Julie rounded out 2011 with the second release from her own label, a Christmas EP, “Who Needs Mistletoe,” which received great praise from the New York Times, which called the title track, “one of several great songs on this release, which might be Ms. Roberts’s best work since her smoldering self-titled 2004 debut. Like that album, this EP is spare and desperate-sounding, with plenty of spaces for Ms. Roberts’s lovely husky voice to seep into.”

Knowing she is truly blessed to be doing what she loves, Roberts spends much of her time, when not working on music, sharing her talent with several charity organizations close to her heart. She recently joined with the organization Magdalene as the first female country artist to embark on a women’s prisons tour…performing, sharing her story and providing hope along the way.

Many doors have opened changing the life of the petite blonde who has fond memories of singing along to the country songs blaring out of the radio in her mother’s white truck in Carolina. She’s learned a tremendous amount about life and herself on this remarkable journey, from white trucks to red carpets… and it is just beginning.
Venue Information:
The Southgate House Revival-Sanctuary
111 East 6th Street
Newport, KY, 41071
http://www.southgatehouse.com/