Sunday, December 2, 2012
Barnstormers open for Pegi Young
Barnstormers from North Alabama
Alabama Music Office.com goes to Flying Monkey Arts Center in Huntsville, Alabama to attend performances by Barnstormers and headliner Pegi Young.
Barnstormers is the long-time collaboration between singer/songwriter Ronnie Moore with multi-instrumentalist Chris Wilson featuring a revolving cast of musicians and producers.
Based out of the suburbs of North Alabama, Barnstormers was started in 2002.
In 2007, the band released their first independent release entitled "Switchblade Serenades", and on November 28, 2009 they released their sophomore album "Graveyard Town".
As Sarah Norris of BloodOnTheBluegrass.com writes "Born in the heat and humidity of Madison County, Alabama is Barnstormers, a roots-gone-mad ensemble and an undiscovered gem of the south; a spooky cocktail of gothic Americana and southern swing that will take you for a ride on pure raw emotion, and then leave you for dead at the mercy of hangovers and heartbreak."
Barnstormers started off in the singular: Barnstormer, which was a side project for then theater student Ronnie Moore, who started channeling his obsession with murder ballads, poetry and Southern lore into folk songwriting. He joined up with college friends, forming quickly into a harmonizing duo (with fellow student Brad Herring) and then into a quartet (with Chris Wilson and bassist Tyler Westmeyer). They released their first album, "Switchblade Serenades: A Collection of Unfortunate Songs" (2007) from a collection of demos recorded by Moore between 2002 and 2007.
Again, Sarah Norris, "The collection of eleven songs is exactly what it sounds like; a slow ride down through heartache by way of solemn roots-driven folk and backwoods charm. Such songs as 'No Shame' and a rendition of traditional 'Moonshiner' would be the worthy soundtracks for any whiskey-fueled regret or the dirges for a lost love."
After member changes, numerous national tours and work with award-winning slam poet, Gypsee Yo, the band returned to record a more personal memoir of life in the South, their second album "Graveyard Town" (2009). Sarah Norris writes " Graveyard Town takes disturbing and dark to the most sinfully enjoyable level. With just Ronnie and Chris this time (and just a couple tracks featuring guests Nathan Edwards of Decatur-based band Carridale, Leena Worthy, Brad Herring returning and the finely untuned voices of local friends) they step forward and take off into the realm of eerie tales of wicked women, vampires, and other midnight haunts. The title track is an up-to-no-good anthem about living by night in a town you hate as a vampire and is a pretty good summary for the rest of the album. If listened to from start to finish it inspires chills, foot stomping, and everything in between."
Though dark, ominous, theatrical and often misunderstood, the Barnstormers have a very fulfilling, genuine style that mixes tongue-in-cheek humor with heart-wrenching grief, colorful discontent with brush strokes of sorrow.