Lane Gosnay, founder of the La Grange Bugle Boy, has the innate gift for being able to recognize real talent when she hears it. This year, for the first time, the annual Talent Trust recipient will be an eclectic, indefinable group that stretches the boundaries of musicality enough to win the respect of even the most discerning music lovers- Chubby Knuckle Choir (CKC).
The Choir, made up of five best friends, consists of Tres Womack (guitar and vocals), Rory Smith (vocals and percussion), Slim Bawb (mandolin and other stringed instruments, and vocals), Dave Gould (string bass) and Perry Lowe (percussion). A more diverse group of band members you will never find, but this "choir" is quickly making its mark on the independent music scene.
They are taking a bold new approach, redefining everything that we've come to accept as a traditional genre. Country? No. Bluegrass? Nope. Rock? Not exactly. So how do you define something so unique that it's never been done before?
Well, you can't. There are no words to describe what you will experience when you see and hear the magic that transpires during their "spontaneous," "off the cuff" performances. The chemistry is tangible and their style completely unique. Expect unusual instruments; think congas, frottoir (rub board), cajon (Brazilian box drum), and a djembe (African drum) and a good dose of soulful lyrics and amazing harmony. Their songs integrate Swamp Rock/Blues, Country, American, Soul, and Rhythm and Blues.
And when they're not performing, they're listening to Sinatra, Wilco and Ryan Adams, so the potential for creative influence is endless.
Funky. That's how vocalist/guitarist Tres Womack describes their sound.
According to Tres Womack, Chubby Knuckle Choir came together in Bastop, borne of a group of diverse musicians during a jam session at a local venue. He says, "There has never been a cross word between us and there probably never will be."
What's their secret? "A pure passion for what we do."
Their upcoming cd, "Reveille," is produced by Austin's Andre' Moran and consists of 10 cuts, nine of which were written and/or co-written by band members. All lead singers will be singing their self-penned material. Womack describes the album as having all the elements of their signature sound, with a focus on banjo-blues.
The CD gets its name in keeping with the Bugle Boy theme. Womack explains "Reveille" was chosen as a direct nod to the Bugle Boy because the band realizes the opportunities that are available to CKC because of the 2014 Talent Trust. The honor has become their "wake-up call."
Gosnay says she is thrilled to present CKC as Bugle Boy's fifth Talent Trust recipients. "After just one show at The Bugle Boy, we were sold on this 'funkafied,' eclectic group. Every member of the Chubby Knuckle Choir contributes his own songs and style. This diversity is brilliantly weaved together and takes the audience on a rarefied genre-jumping musical journey that is both musically intriguing and fun to watch."
Womack is humbled by being this year's recipients. "This is an incredible honor. It was a bucket list item just to be able to play at the Bugle Boy. When we found out we had won-well, it was just incredible."
Chubby Knuckle Choir follows Elizabeth Wills (2009), Kat Edmonson (2011), John Fullbright (2012) and Woody Russell (2013) as Talent Trust recipients.
CKC will be performing at the Bugle Boy on November 8, 2014.