We are now offering Monsieur Jeffrey Evans and His CC Riders' self titled album, Ross Johnson and Jeffrey Evans' Vanity Session and Axemen's Sac Tap Nut Jam for digital download through Revolver/Midheaven.
Vanity Session was the result of a year-long residency Ross Johnson and Jeffrey Evans held at The Buccaneer club in Memphis, TN. The album was recorded on March 21, 2008, at Zebra Ranch Studio in North Mississippi by the legendary Jim Dickinson with the help of former Reigning Sound drummer, Greg Roberson.
Ross Johnson has been a staple of the Memphis music scene for more than three decades. He's probably best known for his ranting on Alex Chilton's seminal solo record, Like Flies On Sherbert (Ross is the Baron). Johnson was also the original drummer for The Panther Burns—although he missed the Behind The Magnolia Curtain sessions due to drunkenness. Now retired from his job as a librarian, Ross currently spends most days drinking, ranting, writing about music and playing drums (typically in that order). Like Don Ayler's trumpet playing, Ross is unrestrained—at a high volume, he'll tell you everything you wanted to know (and more) about Memphis music.
Jeffrey Evans came to Memphis in the mid '80s, following the path to Sun Records. A devotee of Charlie Feathers, Evans influenced many with his band The Gibson Bros. Alongside the late Jack Taylor, Evans fronted '68 Comeback throughout the '90s (and produced Tav Falco and The Panther Burns excellent return to form, Panther Phobia, in 2000). He currently fronts Jeffrey Evans and His Southern Aces.
Vanity Session features Ross and Jeff switching off on lead vocals; at their request, Jim Dickinson showed them how he performed "I've Had It" for Like Flies On Sherbert. Thankfully Evans recorded the song and it appears on the record. Backing Ross and Jeff are Greg Roberson (drums), John Paul Keith (guitar), Adam Woodward (piano and organ) and Jeremy Scott (bass).
Vanity Session is highly recommended for fans of Like Flies on Sherbert, the film Stranded in Canton, The Gibson Bros., and vanity records (because that's what it is).
Terminal Boredom just put up their March record reviews and gave C.C. Riders a nice one:
CC Riders s/t LP
Memphis super-jam group led by Monsieur Jeffrey Evans, with a backing band made up of Jay Reatard (guitar) and Alicja Trout (drums) right around the genesis of Lost Sounds and James Arthur (who was also playing in the Legs at the time, post-Necessary Evils) on guitar as well. Now, before you get thinking about the wild and crazy guitar antics this band could get up to with those players, just cool your jets (although this thing will get hairy, don't worry...). You need to think of this as a Jeff Evans record first and foremost and then you won't let yourself down. If you read the liners or any interviews regarding the band, this was basically a vehicle for Jeff with Jay, James and Alicja happy to be along for the ride and play in a band with a legendary guy they all admired very much. It's a mix of Mr. Evan's usual menu: some standards, some garagey versions of punk tunes and a few of his story-tellin' originals. "The Long Long Ballad of the Red-headed Girl" is literally long, but a great Evans honky-tonk spiel-type thing. My favorite moment on this is a real Memphis-style rave-up version of "I Gotta Right" that quite honestly slays. They also do a pretty fucking killer "Train Kepta Rollin'" with plenty of guitar shred. "King Riders Boogie" is righteous Memphis garage and "This Pussy's Gotta Give" is a good reminder that Jeff is punk as fuck and not afraid to work blue. The record closes with three "blues" variations, with Merle Haggard's "Workin Man Blues" particulary motivated and rockin'. A record that's a lot of fun to listen to, particularly if you're a Jeff Evans fanatic, but Reatards fans will dig on it too. I'm happy to add this to my Memphis collection. Scum stats: 500 copies. (RK)
See more of TermBo's tasteful reviews here: http://terminal-boredom.com/reviews/201303/