slim sandy

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Slim Sandy / Slim Sandy and his Hillbilly Boppers

Slim Sandy and the Hillbilly Boppers – Rolling and Tumbling

Slim Sandy

Crow Matic Records CR-014 [2021]
It Ain’t Right – Ice Water – Jack’n’Jill Boogie – Whatcha gonna do When There Ain’t No Swing – Hit That Jive Jack – I Hear You Talkin’ – Meet Me At the Moonlight – Hillbilly Fever – Gettin’ that Lowdown Swing – Rompin’ and Stompin’ -Rolling and Tumbling

The latest Slim Sandy and the Hillbilly Boppers is made of the same combination of hot rustic bop, hokum, jug band and hillbilly harmonies as the previous ones. However, there are some differences in the mix.
More than half of the tracks feature the great Tom Hammel on steel guitar. Hammel and his instrument really bring something unique to the band. Also, you’ll hear a double bass played by Clark Brendon on a couple of tracks. It’s not that I dislike Willa Mae’s washtub bass, far from that, but having a double bass deepens their sound and brings diversity to the set. One will hear an excellent bluesy rendition of I Hear You Talkin’ sung by Willae Mae among these tracks.
There’s also a great gospel with the Carter Family’s Meet Me At The Moonlight.
Gettin’ That Lowdown Swing and Rompin’ and Stompin’ were recorded with French musicians, namely Bombo Lolo Tongo on steel, Colada Jones on piano and Max Genouel on guitar. The band goes for an early Western Swing style that suits them perfectly on these tracks. I’d really be curious to hear them try stuff with a horn or a clarinet a la Arnett Nelson.
This is the great talent of Slim Sandy and his band. Despite a somewhat limited arsenal, they always proposed something new and exciting, whether by finding new ways to play old songs or adding guest musicians.


Slim Sandy & the Hillbilly Boppers – It Ain’t Right

Crow-Matic Records [2021]
Ice Water – Sweet Love On My Mind – It Ain’t Right – Sag Drag And Fall – Hillbilly Fever

Each new Slim Sandy and the Hillbilly Boppers is like reuniting with old friends. You’re always happy to meet them. Or it’s like turning the dial of your radio and hearing an old familiar voice, like the old-time radio shows.
Keeping the same approach with no concessions to trends or modernity, the trio, augmented here by the excellent Tom Hammel on steel guitar, rips through five hot numbers that are sure to give you the Hillbilly fever.
Glenn Barber’s Ice Cold Water seems tailored-made to received the Hillbilly Boppers’ treatment with Slim and Willa Mae singing harmonies like Jimmy and Johnny. Which led us to Sweet Love On My Mind. The Hillbilly Boppers’ version owes more to their version than Johnny Burnette.
Stuff Smith’s jazz/jive classic It Ain’t Right was already played by Slim with the Crazy Rhythm Daddies. I suspect their version to be also inspired by the Washboard Wonders, who recorded it on Bluebird in 1936. Anyway, Slim Sandy and the band turn it into a hillbilly/jug number, with perfect harmonies.
Their cover of Sid King’s Sag Drag and Fall proves how comfortable they are with bands having one foot in country music and the other in Rockabilly.
Hillbilly Fever (Little Jimmy Dickens) is another perfect vehicle for the band.
As for the previous release, this one is very joyful, exciting and as I said, they have something amicable in their music.
This one and the other albums can be found on Spotify, iTunes, Amazon and all musical platforms.
Also pay a visit to the band’s website at
https://slimsandy.wordpress.com/


Slim Sandy & the Hillbilly Boppers – Done Gone!

Crow-Matic Records 2018
Done Gone!  – Chicken Shack Stomp – Romp and StompI’ve Got the Boogie Blue

Though tempting, it’s not always evident, nor fair, to compare one band to another to describe its music. You can give a vague idea, but you can also fail to describe the band’s personality. And you can’t deny that Slim Sandy and the Hillbilly Boppers have tons of personality. Album after album they created their style and no contemporary band sounds like them.
If you ever asked yourself (be careful, it’s here that I slip the comparison) “What if the Delmore Brothers had recorded a session with the Cannon’s Jug Stompers?” I guess that the result would be quite close to Slim Sandy and the Hillbilly Boppers’ latest ep.
The title track is pure hillbilly yet rocking at the same time. Chicken Shack Stomp is in the same vein and features Mike Sadava on steel guitar. Both are sung by Slim Sandy.
The B-sides opens with Romp and Stomp. Willa Mae and Slim Sandy sing harmony vocals on that one. I wrote it in previous reviews but let me say it again: Willa Mae is a real plus to the band with her mastery of washtub bass and her contribution to the vocals. This is confirmed by Charlene Arthur’s I’ve Got the Boogie Blues on which she sings lead.
All in all, Done Gone is an excellent ep that encompasses the sound of the band perfectly. The vinyl adds to the beauty of the thing, especially with a cover drawn by Slim Sandy/Peter Sandmark.

Fred “Virgil” Turgis

Slim Sandy and the Hillbilly Boppers - Boogie Woogie FeverSlim Sandy & the Hillbilly Boppers – Boogie Woogie Fever

Crow-Matic Records 2018
Done Gone  – I’ve Got the Boogie Blue – Boogie Woogie Fever – Romp and Stomp – Chicken Shack Stomp – Buster’s Dream – Everybody Loves My Baby – It’s All Your Fault – Hillbilly Ball  – Crazy Bout You – No Good Daddy   – Saturday Night Fish Fry   

I was still catchin’ my breath and restin’ my feet after listening repeatedly to “Getting That Low Down Swing” that “Boogie Woogie Fever” arrived in my letter box. Slim! Dont you have no pity? Anyway, my feet will rest later. This new album contains twelve songs including four by Peter Sandmark/Slim Sandy.  They mix hillbilly, western swing (hence the return of Mike Sadava on steel for three tracks), hokum, jug bands music, country blues (with plenty of harmonica), skiffle, a dash of rockabilly and some rhythm’n’blues sparkled here and there.
This cocktail has proven to work very well for the trio (and their occasional guests) and “Boogie Woogie Fever” makes no exception. As they say “if it ain’t broken don’t fix it.”
We all know Peter since his Ray Condo days and the Crazy Rhythm Daddies so for a change I’d like to talk about the other two. Willa Mae is a real plus on vocals. Not only her voice blends very well with Peter’s when they sang together (take a listen to “No Good Daddy”), but she’s also top notch when she takes lead. I especially liked her rendition of “Everybody Loves My Baby.” And despite the apparent simplicity of her instrument (the washtub bass) she can get take the best out of it. The other key element is German Ebert sparse drumming. You won’t find drum rolls or crash cymbal here. He plays just what is needed, and it’s a quality. Talking about musicians, fans of Ray Condo will be happy to find Edgar Bridwell on violin on one track.
The cd comes with a 8-page mini comics drawn by Peter Sandmark but I’ve been told that it’s selling like hot cakes, so you’d better hurry if you want one (Slim Sandy’s website).
You can also find it (and the other albums) on Spotify, iTunes and Google Play.
Fred “Virgil” Turgis


Slim Sandy and the Hillbilly Boppers - Getting that low down swingSlim Sandy & the Hillbilly Boppers – Getting that Low Down Swing

Crow-Matic Records 2017
Hug And Spank And Kiss – Hop Skip And Jump – Gettin’ That Lowdown Swing – Whoa Boy – No More Nothing – Be Bop A Lula – I Never See My Baby Alone – We’re Gonna Bop – Crawdad – Cadillac Model – Wow Wow Baby

This fine trio returns with another killer album. It kicks off with the Berry influenced “Hug, Spank and Kiss” written by Slim Sandy and featuring Eddy Cavalero (of the the Cavaleros, a band that also features German Ebert of the Hillblly Boppers on drums) on electric lead guitar. Back to a more acoustic sound with the Collins Kids’ “Hop Skip & Jump” with Willa Mae on lead vocals and harmonies by Slim. “Getting that Lowdown Swing” tales the listener back to the early western swing era (before the genre had a name). In the same vein you’ll find “Cadillac in Model A” and “No More Nothin'” both with Mike Sadava steel. He also plays on “I Never See My Baby Alone”. I always liked that one and the Hillbilly Boppers do great justice to that song.
There’s also a good dose of Hillbilly Bop with “Woah Boy” and “We’re Gonna Bop”.
Another good one is their cover of “Be-Bop-A-Lula.” It sounds like the Everly Brothers version but played by a skiffle band. More skiffle-billy follows with “Crawdad” that changes of pace in the middle and evolves into “Rollin’ My Sweet Baby’s Arms.”
Like the previous one it’s joyful and exuberant and it’s highly contagious.
Fred “Virgil” Turgis


Slim Sandy and the Hillbilly Boppers - Jump Back!
Slim Sandy and the Hillbilly Boppers – Jump Back!

Slim Sandy & the Hillbilly Boppers – Jump Back!

Crow-Matic Records 2014
Jump Back, Love Me, Darlin’ Cory, I’m A Hog For You Baby, Jump Rope Boogie, n The Road Again, Pistol Boogie, Can’t Find The Doorknob, Cow Cow Boogie, Rock ‘n’ Roll Ruby, Rollin And Tumblin

Slim Sandy (Peter Sandmark) is a well known figure on the rocking scene. He drummed for Ray Condo, sang and played guitar in the Crazy Rhythm Daddies and released several albums as a one-man band. He now has a new band, the Hillbilly Boppers, with Willa Mae on washtub bass and harmony vocal and German Ebert on drums, Slim Sandy taking the lead vocals and playing harmonica and swingin’ guitar.

If you want to have a slight idea of the joyful noise made by this hot and fine trio, imagine a mix between the Delmore brothers, Jimmy and Johnny (thanks to Mae’s perfect harmony vocals ) played by a jug band (think Gus Cannon/Noah Lewis) with a swingin’ and a rockin’ edge and some skiffle elements and the fervor of some bluegrass gospels thrown in for good measure. It features eleven tracks lifted from the catalogs of Ella Fitzgerrald, Sun records, Jimmie and Johnny, Muddy Waters and everything good in between  Not only the music and the songs are solid but this record also has a communicative « joie de vivre » that is sure to make you move your feet.  Strongly recommended.
Fred “Virgil” Turgis


Slim Sandy - rough and ready
Slim Sandy – rough and ready

Slim Sandy – Rough & Ready

Sleazy Records SRCD09
Bow Legged Daddio-Cats Was A Jumpin’-Couldn’t Sleep Last Night-Flathead Ford-Slow Down Baby-No Gasoline-Mr. Guitar-Gettin’ By Jus’ The Same -Three Alley Cats-Party In Room 109
Here is a new short ten tracks Cd from the one-man band Slim Sandy for the spanish Sleazy Records. Slim is part of a today one-man trend with people like Bloodshot Bill, Scott H. Biram, Sheriff Perkins, The Legendary Tiger Man, Mark Sultan, Muskrat, Mr. Bonz, Urban Junior, Reverend Beat Man, The Fabulous Go-Go Boy and Rizorkestra just to name a few of them. But most of these guys are on the trashy side and are influenced more by Hasil Adkins or the sixties garage sounds than Doctor Ross or Harmonica Franck.
Slim with his guitar, harmonica, and suitcase drum is on the rockabilly, blues and hillbilly side. This album “Rough & Ready” with his eight self-penned songs and two covers (John Worthan’s “Cats Was a Jumpin’” and Roy Hall’s “Three Alley Cats” even if his “Flathead Ford” is very similar to Papa Lightfoot’s “Mean Old Train”) will delight the raw and primitive sound lovers. The last track “Party in Room 109” is a song Slim wrote based on the events that happened in room 109 at the Red Hot and Blue Rockabilly Weekender 2006. Don’t have to tell you that there were a lotta booze, yellin’ and savage rock’n’roll involved.
David “Long Tall” Phisel


This is Slim Sandy
This is Slim Sandy

Slim Sandy – This is Slim Sandy

Crow-Matic Records
Don’t Need Nuthin’ – 7 Nights To Rock – Come Back Baby – Bicycle Boogie – You Can’t Fool Me – Cabin By The Creek – California Blues – Down In Kokomo – The Way You Dance – Rock It All Night
This cd offers 10 cuts (three covers and seven originals) recorded live by Slim Sandy, the one man hillbilly blues band. Harmonica, guitar, drums and vocals all played in the same time by the same man. Slim Sandy’s inspiration goes from blues (Doctor Ross’ Come Back Baby) to hillbilly (a great rendition of Jimmie Rodgers’ California Blues with yodel) with a lot of Hasil Adkins and Rock’n’roll in between. Sandy’s own are great too and well written. Sure the sound is raw, but you don’t expect a one man band sounding like a Phil Spector production, do you? Believe me, you can’t go wrong with this guy !
Fred “Virgil” Turgis

Slim Jim Phantom, the Rockabilly cat!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Slim Jim Phantom in action

Slim Jim Phantom

He’s banged the skins for rock ‘n’ roll supergroup, Dead Men Walking.

He’s drummed for the rockabilly star-studded 13 Cats.

He’s played with the Head Cat, Col. Parker, his own Phantom Trio, and…did I mention a little band from Long Island, New York called the Stray Cats? He’s Slim Jim Phantom, rockabilly’s man of a thousand faces.

Since picking up his first pair of drumsticks at the age of ten, Slim Jim Phantom has become widely recognized as rockabilly’s premiere drummer. With a distinctive standup drumming style inspired by the genre’s musicians of yesteryear, Phantom’s skin skills are in high demand.
by Denise Daliege-Pierce

Who taught you to play the drums?
Slim Jim Phantom I pretty much learned from—took lessons from—Mousie Alexander, an old time jazzy guy. Benny Goodman’s drummer, I think. At least, that’s what he said. I’d like to believe him.

How did your love of rockabilly—both the music and the lifestyle—develop?
Slim Jim Phantom I had always liked rhythm and blues music. There were no Hootenannies, no Viva Las Vegas’s kind of thing—none of that existed. I think that we [Stray Cats] first discovered it with the Beatles and Carl Perkins kind of records. Nothing like that was available at the time, really. We rediscovered Elvis, really. We knew the fat Elvis; that was it. From there, we met English kind of guys: teddy boy types. It was just really trial and error.

The Tomcats - 1979
The Tomcats – 1979

Was it difficult to switch from drumming in a sitting position to drumming while standing?
Slim Jim Phantom I don’t remember it being difficult. It was the cool thing that no one else was really doing. It was a different concept. I kind of kept pushing it all forward. It was pretty easy.

Who, would you say, have been your biggest musical influences?
Slim Jim Phantom Really, any of the original rock ‘n’ rollers. Elvis, of course; Eddie Cochran, Gene Vincent, Carl Perkins…Little Richard was a big influence—any one of those original rock ‘n’ rollers. The Beatles; Led Zeppelin…anything that was true to rock ‘n’ roll. Ricky Nelson; the Johnny Burnette Trio—we played a lot of songs off of those records.

The Johnny Burnette Trio was just incredible. I recently read a book titled Rockabilly Legends, in which the author claims—I’m not sure if you’ve heard this story—that the term “rockabilly” was started by the Burnette brothers’ song “Rockabilly Boogie”, which they wrote for their sons, Rocky and Billy.
Slim Jim Phantom I don’t know. I’d heard that “rockabilly” was first used by some record executives or [Sun Records founder] Sam Phillips. It’s all stories, and you never know which ones are true. I just did a gig with Rocky Burnette. I had about twenty minutes’ notice!

What brand of drums do you play?
Slim Jim Phantom Gretsch.

Why do you prefer the Gretsch brand?
Slim Jim Phantom Well, they kind of endorsed me. I think a lot of it has to do with Gretsch having a certain history with rockabilly and rock ‘n’ roll. Fred and Diane Gretsch met me as a teen. It’s American…it’s just a great product.

I know that you are frequently asked about your least favorite Stray Cats album, but which is your favorite?
Slim Jim Phantom Almost every guy’s first record is their favorite. Look at the Beatles; the Rolling Stones. It’s your greatest accomplishment. The fact that the gigs and the hard work have finally paid off…you did this. The first record that anyone makes is always their favorite. You didn’t really make demos then. The fact that we had a pretty unique story—we moved from New York to London. We had everything against us: no money, no place to live; no one was recording this music. We were All-American, like the Yankees. Now, new fans of rockabilly are rediscovering our music. Our music is like the “Heartbreak Hotel” and “Rockabilly Boogie” of today. “Rock This Town” and “Runaway Boys” are like that.

Phantom, Rocker and Slick - 1985
Phantom, Rocker and Slick – 1985

How was Phantom, Rocker & Slick formed?
Slim Jim Phantom Wow, Phantom, Rocker & Slick. Right after Stray Cats, we all had to take time off. I think that Earl Slick had just done John Lennon’s record when he was killed. I think that I met Julian Lennon, and he said, ‘You should all get together.’ Brian was doing a solo thing. We had a deal with EMI and we had just gone off a record with Stray Cats, and didn’t want to do that, but everything I play winds up sounding like me. We were young and trendy. The first record was really good. Phantom, Rocker & Slick sounds a little more rock ‘n’ roll; a little more metal. I think we made the Top 20 with that first record.

What caused the group to split up?
Slim Jim Phantom Well, Brian called and wanted to do the band again. The Stray Cats are first priority.

I own a copy of the Carl Perkins television special from the mid-1980s in which you, Eric Clapton, George Harrison, Ringo Starr and numerous other musicians performed with the rockabilly legend. What was that experience like for you?
Slim Jim Phantom I’ve been very lucky to get these historic kind of events. David Edmunds—he produced three or four of the really good Stray Cats records—was the musical director for the show. He called the Stray Cats, but we’d split up. He hired Lee and me for the rhythm section. The cool thing was we rehearsed about a week before the show. Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton, George Harrison—all the older guys kind of kept to their selves. We were the young guys. I went up to George and broke the ice. We became pretty friendly after that. The show went so well; such a positive kind of experience.

George was reclusive—was out of music for about six years. For a good three years, we became friendly. He gave me some things, like some old boots from the Beatles. You could sense a certain enlightenment about him, or elevation. I spent the day with him before he died—he was just an amazing character.

How did you obtain your role in the Charlie Parker biopic Bird?
Slim Jim Phantom I got it pretty much by accident. I can mention that I worked with an Oscar-winning actor and director at the same time. How many people can say that? Forest Whitaker is, probably, the best actor around. Clint Eastwood’s an award-winning director.

It—somehow—had to do with the agency I was with needed a drummer who looked like they were playing the drums, but not, and who could talk, at the same time. And my wife at the time was an actress. So, I did it—five, six, eight lines—for a month. I didn’t really want to do it, but my son was being born, and SAG [Screen Actors Guild] insurance kicked in and covered it. I was nervous about my lines, I repeated them a billion times. So, I get down to the set; there’s an old little trailer. Someone took me inside and introduced me to Forest. We were hanging out and talking. Forest and I became good friends for a few years after that.

Did you ever consider pursuing acting on a larger scale?
Slim Jim Phantom No, it seems too hard, going to auditions; the rejection of it.

How did you become a member of Dead Men Walking?
Slim Jim Phantom Dead Men Walking is just another chancy, cool thing. On the first Stray Cats tour of England in 1980, we got to the first gig. Mike Peters of the Alarm, his band was the opening act. Mike and I became pretty good friends. After a few weeks, we found out they’d just brought their instruments and started playing. They made believe they were the opening act, but they weren’t. But, by then, they were so entrenched in the tour…

How often, in rock ‘n’ roll, do you meet someone and stay friendly with them for 25 years, putting together a thing of a group with three or four hit songs each that everyone knows? It was Mike, [Spear of Destiny’s] Kirk Brandon, [the Damned’s] Captain Sensible and me. We did it mainly acoustic. Mike called me one day at home and said, ‘I’ve got this concept.’ I said, ‘I’m doing it.’ I can’t say no to Mike. We made a record this year.

I’ve heard that you sang lead vocal on “Runaway Boys” during a recent DMW tour. How did that feel?
Slim Jim Phantom Oh, it was good. I can warble my way through it, I sing most of the Stray Cats songs, I can warble my way through most of the songs, except “Stray Cat Strut”. Brian and Lee can sing. You have to be a singer to sing “Stray Cat Strut”. Mike Peters has a great voice and sings it on the tour. I know what Ringo felt like when he sang with the Beatles. I think that the audience appreciates me singing those songs.

For those who may not know, you have recently become involved with the Love Hope Strength Foundation, an organization dedicated to providing treatment and support for cancer patients. How did your affiliation with the group come about?
Slim Jim Phantom That’s Mike Peters. Like I said, I can’t say no to Mike. Mike Peters is a cancer survivor. Twice. The first time, he had it nine years. Nine years. It came back when we were on tour. We only cancelled one show, because he had to have tests done. After six months of lockdown—chemo and remission—we walked the steps of the Empire State Building. We recorded the performance on the deck. It was another one of those great historic events. We’re gonna do the Eiffel Tower [in the future].

How did you meet fellow Head Cat members Lemmy Kilmister and Danny B. Harvey? How did the three of you come together to form the group?
Slim Jim Phantom Lemmy is another guy I’ve known—27 years. He was one of the first guys at a Stray Cats gig at a pub in London. There were, like, ten people there—Keith Richards was there; Chrissie Hynde was in the audience. Lemmy’s a very hip guy, very knowledgeable; a big Buddy Holly fan. We became friends back then and stayed friends.

He moved to L.A. on the street next to me. We played one track on a tribute album to Elvis. Me, Lemmy, Danny B. and Johnny Ramone—who we also lost to cancer—got two or three songs we wanted to play and came back every day for two weeks, until we had a record. I’ve known Danny B. since [his days with] the Rockats.

Headcats in action.
Headcats in action.

Danny B. Harvey is just tremendous. He can, pretty much, do anything musically.
Slim Jim Phantom Danny is as good as everybody: as good a guitar player; as good a producer.

Our readers may be unaware that you own a West Hollywood, California nightclub called the Cat Club. How do you juggle your numerous music projects—Stray Cats, Dead Men Walking, the Head Cat, Slim Jim’s Phantom Trio, 13 Cats—with your Cat Club duties and family life?
Slim Jim Phantom Me, my little trick is I have a very big calendar with big squares that I hang on the wall. I have bad handwriting. I use a Sharpie. Like music—when the Cats call, that kinda trumps everything. E-mail’s great. E-mail’s perfect, ‘cause the time doesn’t matter. If I have a question for Captain Sensible, I can send an e-mail anytime. Everyone has it, except Lemmy. Sometimes, things overlap. Guys in rock ‘n’ roll are more together than you think.

On a different note, are there any contemporary rockabilly musicians that you enjoy listening to?
Slim Jim Phantom Guys who I became very friendly with is Living End. [Guitarist/vocalist] Chris Cheney’s become a very good friend of mine, and they wanted to meet me. My son played a record for me, and I loved it. I think that Big Sandy’s very good. Hot Rod Lincoln’s very good. Sue Moreno; Tiger Army. Reverend Horton Heat is very good. He’s become a friend.

Danny B. has a group called Lonesome Spurs with Lynda Kay—she’s a star. She’s the real deal. Lonesome Spurs is like a country version of White Stripes, which is my favorite band. I just did a couple gigs and needed a bass player, so I used Rory Justice. He’s very good. Eddie Angel’s great. He has a band, the Neanderthals. I think the Neanderthals are the most entertaining band around. We’re gonna try to plan a little tour with the Neanderthals and the Head Cat.

I know that Brian Setzer has developed ear problems as a result of years of playing electric guitar. Have you had any wrist pain after drumming for so many years?
Slim Jim Phantom No, I’ve been pretty fortunate, somehow.

What is your favorite Stray Cats-related memory?
Slim Jim Phantom It’s my whole life, really. So many things that have happened came from that. Probably hearing the first record for the first time; hearing “Runaway Boys” on the radio for the first time. The odds were stacked against us for making it. No one was playing this music. There was no template for it.

Jim, thanks so much for taking the time to speak with me today. Do you have any final thoughts that you would like to share with our readers?
Slim Jim Phantom I do a lot of work with ONE.org. They don’t want any money, just an e-mail address. Go check it out; sign up. It takes two seconds. Just two seconds, and you’ll be doing something nice for me.

or more information on Slim Jim Phantom, the Love Hope Strength Foundation, ONE.org, or to purchase some of Slim Jim’s music, check out the following websites:
www.slimjimphantom.com
www.facebook.com/officialsjp
www.one.org

Tom Hammel

Tom Hammel – Steelin’ Crazy Rhythm

Self released [2020]
Four Steps West – Out of Odessa – Tenderly – Cherry – Crazy Rhythm – Si Tu Vois Ma Mere – It’s All Your Fault – Mission to Moscow – When Sunny Gets Blue – What Is This Thing Called Love? – Steelin Home – Willow Weep for Me

Tom Hammel, the steel guitarist on Slim Sandy’s latest album, also released a solo album.
He gathered a set of stellar musicians, including Paul Pigat on guitar, Jeremy Holmes on upright bass, James Badger on drums, and icing on the cake, Canada’s sweetheart of Swing, the great Alex Pangman who sings Cindy Walker’s It’s All Your Fault. She already recorded this song for one of her solo albums, but this is a new version, with steel to the fore.
Besides this song, it’s an all-instrumental album.
It mixes jazz standards (King Cole’s When Sunny Gets Blue, Billie Holiday’s Willow Weep For Me) with western swing classics. Songs like Crazy Rhythm or Mission To Moscow, are not strictly speaking western swing tunes but have been popularized by Wills’ Tiffany Sessions.
The set is also really well built. Hammel alternates hot stuff on which he and Pigat trade licks like crazy with dreamy and reflective tunes (Tenderly) and mid-tempos (What Is This Thing Called Love) on which Hammel dialogues with himself, playing steel, guitar and accordion.
The arrangements are always innovative, like the accordion that echoes the steel on Sydney Bechet’s Si Tu Vois Ma mère.
It’s very well-produced and reminded me of the quality of Noel Boggs Quintet’s Magic Steel Guitar.
If you like albums like The Hot Guitars of Biller and Wakefield or Guitars in Perspective by John Munnerlyn and Lee Jeffriess, you can buy this one with confidence.
Grab a copy at https://tomhammel.bandcamp.com/releases

Buy the magazine!

We launched a paper version of the website under the name of Jumpin’ from 6 to 6.

Issue 2 (October 2021) features the first parts of our stories of the Rockats, the Quakes and Red Hot’n’Blue. It also features interviews with Neo-Rockabilly legend Dave Phillips and Harry & the Hounds.
Articles about Vinylux records, the Ringlets Trio, the Black Crabs, Little Rachel, Slim Sandy and his Hillbilly Boppers, the Nitros, the Swamp Dogs and Ravenna & the Magnetics, and more than 100 records reviews complete this 68-page issue.

You can buy it through amazon in the following countries.


The first issue (February 2021) contains 68 pages of interviews (Miss Lauren Marie, the Piccadilly Bullfrogs, Phil Haley, Pat Cupp, Crazy Cavan) articles (the story of the Stargazers, Ripsaw records, Happy Drivers, Crazy Legs, Memphis Rockabilly Band, Colton Turner) and more than 100 records reviewed.

You can buy it through amazon in the following countries.

Reviews

Compilation albums

Pat Capocci (reviews)

Pat Capocci – Hot Hot Heat

Pat Capocci Hot hot Heat

Sleazy Records – SR169
Hot Hot Heat / Where the Eagles Fly

Released in 2019 on Sleazy Records, this is another incendiary record by Pat Capocci. On this single, he’s backed by Lieven Declercq on drums, Clark Kenis on double bass and Walter Broes (Ratmen, Seatsniffers, Smokestack Lightning) on acoustic guitar.
The A-side is mean Bo Diddley-tinged number, whereas the b-side is more Country-Rockabilly-American, not that far from some of the best Lee Rocker’s recordings. Both come from the pen of Capocci and are excellent. It also comes in a superb package, beautifully designed by Chris Wilkinson.


Pat Capocci - Coming In Hot
Pat Capocci – Coming In Hot

Pat Capocci – Coming in hot / Burn it down Baby

Ruby Records RR 45 102 

Ruby Records did it again! After launching the label with none other than Big Sandy and the Fly Rite Boys they joined forces with Australia’s number one rocker, mister Pat Capocci and the result is another killer single.
Side A is a crazy rocker with wild drums, rockin’ piano and Pat’s guitar all over. Side two is bluesier, with a bit of Jimmy Reed’s Shame, Shame, Shame on the beat, and a perfect dirty guitar sound.


 

Pat Capocci - Delinquent Beat
Pat Capocci – Delinquent Beat

Pat Capocci – Delinquent Beat

Press-Tone Music PCD 17 {2009}
Leave The World Behind – All My Fault – Delinquent Beat – Barebones Barber Shop – Devil At My Door – Trapped In A Cage – Sally Ann – Dynamite – Devil Got My Baby – All Night Long – Capocci’s Crawl – Pinch Me Quick – Half-Way Dead – I Promised I’d Never Fall In Love Again

This is Pat Capocci’s second lp and third release if you count Preston Rockabilly vol. 2. And once again it’s been recorded by Graeme Thomas one of the most talented man when it comes to record roots music.
Capocci is backed by the finest musicians you can find on the Aussie’s scene, namely John Flynn and Cal Robinson on bass, Ezra Lee on piano, Ricky ‘the goet’ on drums and Danny Wegzryn on harmony vocals.
This album marks a slight departure in Pat’s sound and shows the young singer/guitarist focusing on his harder stuff. Thus one can hear on a majority of songs the influence of Dale Hawkins (and his two guitar players the great James Burton and Roy Buchanan) as well as Roy Hall. This is for the core of the lp, but one will also find a Texas blues shuffle (Sally Ann), a Bo Diddley Beat (Delinquent Beat) and a jazz ditty (Barebones Barber Shop). The latter made me think how good it would be to hear Pat and Ezra Lee doing an album worth of King Cole inspired material. All My Fault evokes the sound of Carl Mann. Talkin’ about Sun pianists, the listener will also hear in Lee’s piano shades of Charlie Rich too.
Capocci’s Crawl is a fine instrumental with a swamp mood while Clifton Chenier’s All Night Long(the sole cover of the album) is turned into a mean rocker.
Believe me when I say that “Delinquent Beat” is without a doubt one of the best rockin’ record released this past decade.

Fred “Virgil” Turgis


Pat Capocci - Steppin Out
Pat Capocci – Steppin Out

Pat Capocci – Steppin’ Out

Press-Tone Music PCD 11 {2008}
Dead End Track / The Pickle / Way Too Long / Gonna Have Me Some Fun / Shake Me Up / Mary Jane / Sick And Tired / Steppin’ Out / Hillbilly Girl / Give Me A Break / Blue Skies Turn Grey / Chasin’ My Tail / Free And Easy / News Travels Fast (And So Do You).

Pat Capocci is nothing else than one of the best thing to happen to modern rockabilly in years. “Modern” is probably not the right word to describe the sound of this rockin’ cat. He often sounds as if he came straight from the fifties. And this guy has the whole package that would make more than one envious: he has the look, the songs (he penned all songs but two on this album), the sound, the voice and he’s more than able when it comes to deliver a hot (or a smooth) guitar solo.
On Steppin’ Out, his debut album, he shows the wide range of his style and skills. Needless to say that Rockabilly stands in good position with songs like Dead End Track, Steppin’ Out or the excellent Blues Skies Turn Grey that reminds me a bit of Al Ferrier (yes, he is THAT good). There’s also a couple of wild rockers like Free and Easy, Give Me A Break (with a Grady Martin-esque baritone guitar) or the frantic Mary Jane.
Pat is also more than able to deliver some hot blues songs, like the Pickle, an instrumental with piano in the style of Johnny Guitar Watson, and Shake Me Up.
Gonna Have Some Fun leans more on the jazz side, but is equally successful.
At this point, I can believe what you’re thinking: It would be too good to be true if this young cat could also play country music. You bet he can! And with style! Just listen to the hillbilly bop of Hillbilly Girl and Chasin’ My Tail (both featuring Rick Dempster of the Dance Hall Racketeers on steel guitar) the latter having a touch of Buddy Holly’s Gotta Get You Near Me Blues. News Travels Fast (And So Do You), an excellent country shuffle that seems to come straight from the 60’s, rounds up the set with class.

Fred “Virgil” Turgis


Preston Rockabilly - Vol. 2 - Out Of The Valley
Preston Rockabilly – Vol. 2 – Out Of The Valley

Preston Rockabilly Vol. 2 – Out Of The Valley
Press-Tone Music PCD 13
Pat Capocci, Ezra Lee and Danny Wegrzyn (Danny & the Cosmic Tremors) are three Australian cats who play in each other bands. For this album they went to Graeme Thomas’ Preston studio with Cal Robinson on bass, Paul Hainey on drums and Dave Cantrell (the Wildcats, Toni & the Tomcats) on steel.
Pat Capocci performs six songs, all self penned. Full Grown Woman is one of his wildest track, almost garage, Second Best is a traditionnal rockabilly, Burnin’ the Candle is a solid rocker. He also performs a country shuffle (Try To Forget Me), a Jerry Lee type of number (Til I Get to You) and a superb instrumental (After Hours) that has shades of T-Bone Walker and Johnny Guitar Watson.
Danny & the Cosmic Tremors perform five songs (four origiuals and one cover) including two classic rockabillies (my Baby Wants to Rock’n’Roll, So Long). Much wilder is the cover of Bill Johnson’s You Better Dig It. Little Darling, as its title indicates, is a smooth ballad and Feel Allright With You is a hot bopper that reminds me the style of Rip Carson.
Last but not least, Ezra Lee, the piano pumpin’ man, is present here with two rockers (Abby Jane and Goodbye Astrid Goodbye), a strong Rockabilly number (Werris creek Devil). I’m Gonna Kill Your Daddy sees Capocci playing a mean slide guitar that evokes Elmore James and Coalfire Man is more in the style of memphis Slim.
Without a doubt this trio counts among today’s hottest rockabilly/rock’n’roll acts

Fred “Virgil” Turgis