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Showing posts with label Squirrel Nut Zippers. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Squirrel Nut Zippers. Show all posts

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Squirrel Nut Zippers Announce Fall Tour / Hot 20th Anniversary Edition Out This Friday


To Be Released On Vinyl and Digitally
This Friday July 29th

Album Release Show In New Orleans At Tipitina’s On July 30th

July 25, 2016 – It was about 20 years ago when NPR’s Morning Edition said: “It’s not easy to categorize the music of the Squirrel Nut Zippers, except that it’s hot.” 

2016 marks the 20th anniversary of the Squirrel Nut Zippers most celebrated and commercially successful album Hot.  Originally released in the summer of 1996, Hot was the follow up to the band’s critically acclaimed debut The Inevitable. By this time the group had already established a substantial live following across the country thanks to early support from NPR, college radio and non-commercial stations. Hot wound up selling over 1.3 million copies. 

A newly re-mastered version of the album along with a bonus track: “The Puffer” will return to stores this Friday July 29th 2016 on Hollywood Records. Long out of print on vinyl, Hot will make its glorious return to wax on 180-gram vinyl. 

The Squirrel Nut Zippers recently performed their first set of tour dates since 2009 which included a performance at the Montreal International Jazz Festival.  The band has now added a fall tour to their upcoming 2016 touring plans including new stops in: Chicago, Minneapolis, Atlanta, Nashville, Durham, Greensboro and many others.  Full details below.

“We are humbled and incredibly excited by the initial Zippers shows since the re-launch last month,” band leader Jimbo Mathus commented.  “The experience is not to be missed!  The band includes cutting edge talent from New Orleans, the songs are brought to life in an exciting new way. But most things remain unchanged... An amazing experience for young and old.”

In honor of the 20th Anniversary of Hot, the bands visionary creator Jimbo Mathus, along with founding member and partner Chris Phillips (Drums), have crafted a brand new stage show including singer Ingrid Lucia of Flying Neutrino’s fame. Several leading musicians from New Orleans have also been enlisted to serve up the bands unique musical flavor which owes its roots to that city.

For the most up to date information on the band visit:

7/30     New Orleans, LA          Tipitina’s (Album Release Show)
8/31     San Diego, CA             Belly Up Tavern
9/1       Los Angeles, CA          Teragram Ballroom
9/2       Tuolumne, CA              Strawberry Music Festival
9/3       Sausalito, CA               Sausalito Arts Festival
9/15     Dallas, TX                    Kessler Theater
9/16     Houston, TX                 Miller Outdoor Theatre
9/19     Nashville, TN                City Winery (Two Shows)
9/21     Charleston, SC             Charleston Music Hall
9/22     Atlanta, GA                  City Winery (Two Shows)
9/23     Durham, NC                 Carolina Theatre
10/7     Minneapolis, MN          Dakota Bar & Grill (Two Shows)
10/8     Minneapolis, MN          Dakota Bar & Grill (Two Shows)
10/9     Chicago, IL                    City Winery (Two Shows)
10/11   Detroit, MI                     Magic Bag
10/12   Pittsburgh, PA                The Rex 
10/13   Annapolis, MD              Rams Head On Stage
10/14   Blacksburg, VA             The Lyric 
10/15   Greensboro NC              Carolina Theatre 
10/16   Norfolk, VA                   The Norva 
10/18   Alexandria, VA             The Birchmere
10/21   Memphis, TN                River Arts Fest 
10/23   Black Mountain, NC     LEAF Festival
10/26   Jacksonville, FL            Ritz Theatre
11/11   Cape May, NJ               Exit Zero Jazz Festival
11/12   Elizabeth, NJ                Bergen Performing Arts Center                       
11/13   Pawling, NY                 Daryl’s House

Friday, July 1, 2016

Relaunch of the Squirrel Nut Zippers - 2016 Concert Tour - Marquee Theatre Tempe, Arizona - Review

I saw the "New" Squirrel Nut Zippers last night and the show was wild. I had mentioned to a few friends that I was going to see the Squirrel Nut Zippers last night and they either looked at me with a puzzled look or they knew exactly what I was talking about. What the hell is a Squirrel Nut Zipper... well, that I can tell you.       Jimbo says, "Nut Zippers" is a southern term for a variety of old bootleg moonshine, and the band's name comes from a newspaper account which related the story of a highly intoxicated man who climbed a tree one night, refusing to come down even after authorities arrived. The article's headline read: "Squirrel Nut Zipper."     Now what does that have to do with a band and who are they? This band is absolute energy with as much animation as a 30's cartoon and as crazy wild as a drunk squirrel. Mathus is a terrific performer and this band of high level New Orleans style jazz musicians put as much energy into entertaining as they do playing their respective instruments... and that is a bunch!

Anyone who reads my blog regularly knows that I have really become intoxicated with the music of Mississippi native, Jimbo Mathus, since first seeing him with Buddy Guy in the early 2000's. Mathus first formed the Squirrel Nut Zippers in the 90's with Mathus' now ex wife, Katharine Whalen, along with Tom Maxwell, Chris Phillips, Don Raleigh and Ken Mosher. Due to other projects and the breakup of Jimbo and Whalen, the project had gone idle. I've got to tell you I'd never seen a SNZ show nor had I ever really heard their music except in passing one weekend about 10 years ago. When I saw that they were playing in town and that Jimbo was leading the pack, I decided to check it out. The new lineup is Jimbo Mathus — vocals, guitar, slide guitar, tenor banjo, trombone, piano; Chris Phillips — percussion, contraption kit, drums; Ingrid Lucia — vocals; Tamara Nicholai — bass; Justin Carr aka Dr. Sick - fiddle, banjo and saw; Charlie Halloran — trombone; Kevin Louis; Dave Boswell; Henry Westmoreland - saxophone; Kris Takorski on keys; and Kevin O'Donell.

 This was a packed house of people who mostly knew every word of every song. They weren't obnoxious singing over top of the band but it was apparent when the lead vocalist would step back from the mic that the crowd picked up the  slack. Jimbo Mathus is the ultimate showman and blows out every bit of energy that he has on stage. Comes dressed in a wool band suit,  in dark burgundy, complete with gold trim  with a full vest and terrific boots and a derby and a wild black and white striped shirt. This outfit looks like it was bought right off of the back of a musician from the Preservation Hall Jazz Band (sans the policeman's style bill hat). Ingrid Lucia is dressed in a period black dress with a lacy "flounce" and openings down to the waist. This show is pure vaudeville with Jimbo taking every opportunity to throw sly one liners in the very brief moments between songs and the music is punk. I mean high energy, raw and irreverent! I managed to get the play list so here it is:

1) Good Enough For Grandad
2) Club Limbo
3) Put A Lid On It
4) Got My Own Thing Now
5) Blue Angel
6) La Fitte's
7) It Ain't You
8) Suits  (video below)
9) Ghost of Stephen Foster
10) My Drag
11) Wished For You
12) Prince Nez
13) Bad Businessman
14) --- Hell
15) Memphis Exorcism
16) Plenty More

They also played a 2 song encore consisting of:

17) Bedlam Ballroom
18) I Found A New Baby

One of my favorites of the evening was the last song of the set, Plenty More, with lyrics like "They say all the boys are monsters, All the girls are whores, So when you lose the one you love,There's always plenty more". Mathus, who delivers the song with such sincerity, gleans in joy  with his eyes wide (Think Mantan Moreland , almost bugging)

Mantan Moreleand
and a mischievous grin revealing his famous gold tooth on delivering the punch line.

Mathus, the primary writer for all of the band's material is a veritable jukebox of musical knowledge, able to play in most any style. Last night I saw him playing with rich jazz chords and rag time strumming as well as neatly articulated riffs and fluid jazz runs.  Lucia's voice is solid yet unusual, adding to the band's "tricks" and complimenting their strengths. Each of the horn players took a number of solo's bringing out the flavor of New Orleans embedded deep in the roots of this band and Carr's strength on fiddle both in bowing and plucking is a showcase of it's own. He also strums it like a banjo, thumps it for impact and lets not forget his featured saw playing. Yes, this band has it all.

With a remastered twentieth anniversary edition of Hot slated for release July 29 on Hollywood Records and a reunion tour to follow, Billboard is exclusively debuting "The Puffer," a never-before-released bonus track written with the late Stacy Guess. The song, which is named for an old steam train, has a Duke Ellington feel and is "kind of a creepy and very typical Zippers," says Mathus.

Listen to Unreleased "Puffer" Jimbo also notes that he's working on new material in the Squirrel Nut Zipper motif so likely we will be looking for a new release altogether in the near future!



6/29/2016 Tucson, AZ RialtoBuy Tickets
6/30/2016 Tempe, AZ MarqueeBuy Tickets
7/1/2016 Flagstaff, AZ OprheumBuy Tickets
7/2/2016 Las Vegas, NV The Downtown Grand
7/3/2016 Park City, UT Deer Valley ResortBuy Tickets
7/9/2016 Montreal Jazz Festival M├ętropolisBuy Tickets
7/30/2016 New Orleans, LATipitina'sBuy Tickets
8/31/2016San Diego, CABelly Up TavernBuy Tickets
9/1/2016Los Angeles, CATeragram BallroomBuy Tickets
9/2/2016 Tuolumne, CAStrawberry Music FestivalBuy Tickets
9/3/2016 Sausalito, CA Sausalito Arts FestivalBuy Tickets
9/19/2016 Nashville, TN City Winery (Two Shows)Buy Tickets
9/22/2016 Atlanta, GA City Winery (Two Shows)Buy Tickets
10/18/2016 Alexandria, VA The BirchmereBuy Tickets
10/23/2016 Black Mountain, NC LEAF Festival Buy Tickets
11/11/2016 Cape May, NJ Exit Zero Jazz Festival Buy Tickets
11/12/2016 Englewood, NJ Bergen Performing Arts Center Buy Tickets

Jimbo Mathus is a regular southern gentleman, a great musician and songwriter,  a real card, and appears to be humbled and appreciative of every single face in the crowd and every clap of the hand.
I am extremely happy that I made the choice to go see this esoteric band of gypsies weave their magic. They are a fun group of talented musicians and their show is an absolute blast!


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