LIVE: Ramblin Jug Stompers @ Skidmore College’s Tang Museum, 8/17/17
Review and photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk
Going to see Ramblin Jug Stompers live is something between now and yesterday. Yes, they play an old-timey style of music, not unlike the Jim Kweskin Jug Band of the ’60s, but they bring it into the now with a glorious mix of original songs and contemporary pop culture quips. Their heaping helping of humor incited lots of laughs from the standing-room-only crowd during their recent performance on the roof of Skidmore College’s Tang Museum in Saratoga Springs.
Wild Bill (washboard, harmonica, spoons, kazoo, etc.), Cousin Clyde (guitar, kazoo), Bowtie (banjo) and Mister Eck (mandolin, ukulele, jug and other stuff) are the fearless foursome, wading deep into the vintage Americana repertoire for nearly forgotten gems from bygone days, criss-crossing back-porch genres from blues to bluegrass and beyond.
These guys have been playing together for more than a decade in front of full-house audiences, traveling far and wide to spread the jug band gospel – “The doctor says, ‘Give ’em jug band music, it seems to make ’em feel just fine.'”
And some of the Stompers go all the way back to the early ’70s as members of the Star Spangled Washboard Band, as well as ’80s indie-rock faves and MTV darlings Blotto. (You remember “I Wanna Be a Lifeguard,” don’t you?)
In other words, their credentials are stellar, and their ability to made audiences laugh and holler are a whole ‘nother story for you to discover the next time they’re playing out in your neck of the woods.
RAMBLIN JUG STOMPERS SET LIST
Blues in the Bottle
On the Road Again
Jug Band Music
Washington at Valley Forge
Pistol Packin’ Mama
Man of Constant Sorrow
Bound to Ride
Frypan Jack Enters into Heaven
Old Plank Road