Monday, March 02, 2020

The Rhyolite Sound, the Bobby Kingston Band at Saddle'n'Spurs, Friday Feb 28, 2020

For numerous reasons I haven't had a chance to see my fave local honky tonk combo, the Rhyolite Sound for ages so when I saw that they were going to play on our side of town, on a Friday, and at an early time slot, I couldn't refuse.

Saddle'n'Spurs house group, the Bobby Kingston Band, shared the stage this evening and opened the night for the first set. Although they are a bit slicker than I usually prefer, they are super talented musicians, which is always a pleasure to watch. The steel guitar player was pretty darn exceptional (he also played some fine 6-string guitar)and I dug the lead Tele-man's work, as well (who also blows a mean harmonica). Bobby actually came on later in the set - he also manages the bar, so he had a few other things to do, including setting up the sound - but everyone took lead vocals at different times for covers like "Crazy Arms", "I Lie When I Drink" (Rhyolite has done this one, as well) and the set closer, Kris Kristofferson's version of "Me and Bobby McGee". Good stuff!

The Rhyolite Sound has gone through some changes since the last time I saw them - singers/guitarists Larry (the mountain man) and Erik (with the handlebar mustache) have been working with drummer AJ for a while now, but they now have Jason Aragon (Clydesdale, among other groups) on bass (wearing a trucker baseball cap instead of a "proper" western hat like the rest :) ) and a hot new git-picker James Caselton, who is mighty impressive with his steel guitar-like volume swells and classic country riffs. Everyone joins in for harmonies as they went through a number of songs from their latest CD (more on that later) as well as covers from the likes of Wayne Hancock, Johnny Cash and David Allen Coe. There were a lot of slower-tempo songs in the set, which helped to pack the dance floor throughout the night, although the crowd were up'n'about for most of the set, regardless of the speed.

As the night was running a bit later than I originally thought, I only stuck around for the first set, but it was great to see the Rhyolite crew again and hope that they head back to our side of town again soon!