James Hunter was notably “discovered” by Van Morrison while performing in gritty pubs in England, but the songwriter and singer is more than a protege. The James Hunter Six perform across the world, primarily for blues audiences, although they have been embraced by Americana and rock clubs, as well. Their dynamic shows, fronted by the charismatic British-soul singer, highlight their rhythm and horn sections. The band often works up those parts separately before a whirlwind set of rehearsals when they are recording a new album, such as their latest on Dap Tone Records, Hold On.
Holy Ghost Tent Revival took their lowest point in the last five years and used it as a reason to find a new sound and revive their music. It’s not any easier to pigeonhole their work than it was before the departure of their bass player and harmony vocalist, but their music is definitely easier to dance to now than it was before. Despite having almost nothing in common with bluegrass music, they are often lumped in there with old time bands–great for a festival lineup, but inaccurate in categorization. Think of the Avett Brothers with a horn section, and you are much closer to the sound of Holy Ghost Tent Revival.
HGTR built their fanbase over their first five years with regular regional dates, playing nearly 200 nights a year and expanded with some key festivals, like Shakori Hills. Following their band’s membership shuffle, though, they felt like they were starting over. Defeated and unsure of their future as a band, their confidence expanded when they joined Langhorne Slim for a key set of dates, boosting them enough to commit to recording their latest album, Sweat Like the Old Days, and relocating their groove.
Recording actually gave HGTR new purpose, allowing them to commit to their new sound. While their presence is still regional, now that they are back on solid footing as a band, they are ready to return to heavy touring and reaching better audiences. No matter what the venue, though, bring your dancing shoes to a Holy Ghost Tent Revival show.
Please support the bands in this radio program by buying music at the Amazon or iTunes links below:
- Holy Ghost Tent Revival
- Leftover Salmon
- Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings
- Crystal Bright and the Silver Hands
- Hoots & Hellmouth
- Dr. Dog
- Langhorne Slim