The Legendary Shack*Shakers | Spotlight | Indy Week
Pin It

The Legendary Shack*Shakers 

The Legendary Shack*Shakers

The Legendary Shack*Shakers

Don't blame it on The Stray Cats, but when rockabilly became forever entangled in the tattooed arms of punks everywhere, a new breed of rocker was born. Nashville's Shack*Shakers get down in that goop, kin to the crazed, duck-tailed early rock 'n' rollers and those who fetishized them, from the Cramps right on down.

In the flesh, Shakers ringleader Colonel J.D. Wilkes careens around the stage, shaking through songs with a microphone the size of a carburetor. He's coaxing onlookers, the barker at a sideshow, the music a tight second to Wilkes' carny flair and injury-defying acts. He sings through box fans and yank his underwear over his head. Circus tricks, all.

Meanwhile, let's be careful not to let the punch of this original American music--rockabilly and its mutations--get lost in the hustle to dress it up as an undefined mélange of styles.

Back in 1985, a guy named Jim Heath started a band in his native Dallas, where he decided to morph out of his straight-ahead punk background. When Heath decided to start, as he told me in a Birmingham bar years ago, "doing the Reverend Horton Heat," he took a turn that many bands have: that is, to encapsulate their music in a larger-than-life package. His mold has proven resilient, as have the Shakers, with unsuspected commercial and creative opportunities and endless world tours abounding.

The crowds most adore these bands' live electricity, as the records don't compare. Our own Southern Culture on the Skids does this best, backing up its characteristic hillbilly front with hooky songs and a focus on a specific period worth emulation. So, too, the Shakers need you there in person. Otherwise, you may have to depend on someone telling you how they're such a great "Southern" band. And let's face it: What kind of stupid description is that?

The Legendary Shack*Shakers play Kings on Friday, June 23 with Willie Heath Neal and The Malamondos. The shaking starts at 10 p.m.

Latest in Spotlight

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in Spotlight



Twitter Activity

Most Recent Comments

i love WXYC, except fpr the low power, hillsborough hardley gets it, metaphorically speaking. the sound quality is horrible. can …

by peterhoyt on Uncle Woody Sullender (Spotlight)

almost as good a my son, nique

by peterhoyt on Uncle Woody Sullender (Spotlight)

Juliette Lewis is such a great actress but shes an even more amazing singer! I am so excited she is …

by Gerard on Juliette & the Licks (Spotlight)

We the House Of God Church (Keith Dominion)in Fayetteville,NC is having a Gospel Fest for our Y.F.F.U. Dept. in August. …

by yvette 58 on The Campbell Brothers (Spotlight)

This man, as well as Jasper were very talented. They took there handicap, and made a living out of it.They …

by babyboo on Skeeter Brandon (Spotlight)

Comments

i love WXYC, except fpr the low power, hillsborough hardley gets it, metaphorically speaking. the sound quality is horrible. can …

by peterhoyt on Uncle Woody Sullender (Spotlight)

almost as good a my son, nique

by peterhoyt on Uncle Woody Sullender (Spotlight)

Most Read

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…

© 2016 Indy Week • 201 W. Main St., Suite 101, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation