Sunday, March 8, 2015

The Fentons and The 1Uppers at The Shanty Tavern 3-6-15

The Shanty continues to host great bands. As long as they crank out the great music, I feel obliged to attend their little parties. I was still coming down from Petunia and the Vipers last week. That was as good as it gets; Petunia and his mates burned the house down. I knew that this week would compete with the last as these were two of my favorite country bands.

The Shanty Tavern.

Here is Phil, our lovely door man. He checked my wife's I.D. HA!

The sound board; where the magic gets transformed into decibels. Joe Jabon mans this mighty instrument. He makes all the kiddies happy, both on and off the stage.

Dave, lead singer and multi-talented member of The 1Uppers was getting the set list together. He is star of stage and screen and is one of my favorite people around.

John Hendow of the 1Uppers was with his honey enjoying the show while getting ready for his set.

The Fentons were up first. They play a raucous version of country. Introduced by Jon Noe, he described them as a Cow Punk kinda band. They proved this right off the bat, as the banjo player did the pogo as the band cranked out the twang.

The Fentons are: Chas D. Bronson, IV - Drums. Kent "Snake" Caldwell - Bass, Vocals, Tambourine. Dave Keller - Guitar, Harmonica, Vocals. Jim Keller - Guitar, Mandolin, Banjo, Dobro, Vocals. Steve Pearce - Steel Guitar, Electric Guitar, Vocals. You can connect with them here:

I have seen them before and was looking forward to seeing the amazing musicians in this band. They perform marvelous four-part harmony that reminds me of some of the great country bands of old and new.

Steve plays both the lap-steel and 6 string guitar. He has a beautiful voice and can pick with the best of them. I told him how much I enjoyed the set. I try not to slobber over them too much, preferring to worship from afar (and in this blog). Thanks Steve, loved your set.

Jim was a blur most of the evening. He played the mandolin, 6-string and banjo this evening. I see he also plays the dobro, more the merrier. All the while, he is moving up and down, side-ways round. He is super talented and has a great voice too.

Kent was nice enough to give me a CD of their newest. He plays bass and has an amazing voice.

He saw me returning from the stage with their set-list. I like to have as much info as I can when I sit down to write. They played all the songs here, all originals and then were persuaded (with raucous applause) to return and they did a killer Ramones cover. It is easy to spot the one song about dogs, can you spot the other(s)?

It turns out that my wife used to work with his wife. It is a small world.

Chas plays percussion. The drummer and bass are the co-bosses in country bands. They keep the rest of the bums in order.

Chas started playing with brushes early but had to switch to sticks as the band started cranking.

Dave played a gorgeous acoustic and like his brothers (literally in one case) had a great voice. He sings co-lead with Jim and also plays harmonica. He and his brother both dance around the stage and have great facial expressions.

The whole bunch of them made a beautiful noise. They were fun, funny and creative. Their music had the place rocking and there were huge hoots and applause after every song.

Here is a clip from the show:

Keep your eyes out for these guys. They play magic music that makes you happy. They have a personality all their own.  See them at all costs.

As I said earlier, they played an encore when they were prevented from leaving the stage. The Ramones cover they played was both hilarious and jamming. I can't wait to see them again.

Up next was one of my favorite bands ever. My wife Cathie and I see them as much as I can. We have had them play our parties and we LOVE them. The 1Uppers are one of the best country bands in the Northwest.

Here is Jon Noe, the booking talent at The Shanty introducing the band.

We were all still shaking from The Fentons, how could it get any better? The 1Upper's Stomp served notice that the challenge would be met. Their first song sets the tone; The 1Uppers were  here.

I have seen, loved and reviewed them many times. You can see some of them here:, here, and here

The 1Uppers are: Eric Eagle, percussion; Caben 'Buzz' Buswel,  bass; David Russell' lead vocals and acoustic guitar;  Kris Geren, vocals and lead guitar; Jon Hyde, vocals and steel guitar;  John Hendow; vocals, baritone and rhythm guitar. You can connect with them here:

Here is my friend Jon doing one of the things he does real good.

John plays one of my favorite parts in this band. I am always keeping one eye on him as I know that magic tone of his will shine through the din. My wife and I were looking at his pedal tools. It looks like he had some new toys. He is a tech freak and also plays with The Dudley Manlove Quartet.

Kris is one of the better guitarist in the area, and I don't get to hear him nearly enough. Every time I do, I appreciate him more. He effortlessly blazes through the killer solos that mark this great band. He also added vocal this evening. They played a lot of new and different tunes this evening.

Buzz is having a gas in the back; he is the indispensable bottom of The 1Uppers.

Eric is providing the beat in the back. He is also a busy man and plays in several other ventures.

Dave is the soul of the band. His vocals and talent bring life to this great collection of musicians. He is passionate and animated. He is funny and soulful. He has a great voice and delivery.

The dancers were on the floor and The 1Uppers had the place rocking. My wife and I got up to dance to one of our favorite tunes. Halfway home is on their first disc. We have listened to it as many times as one human can listen to one tune. As we danced, we were singing every word as loud as we could. After the song was over Dave reached out for Cathie as she left the dance floor. He said that he appreciated the fact that someone loved his music enough to know all the words to one of his songs.

Here is a clip from the show:

"I love me some 1Uppers" Johnny 7

Thanks to The 1Uppers, The Fentons and The Shanty Tavern for a great night of music and fun. My wife Cathie usually doesn't come out unless Jon and the boys play. She walked in about 10 and stayed way past her bedtime. We appreciate having live music in the neighborhood.

See some live music soon.