Please visit our Official Page: www.south85.com
(Complete BIO, Photos, Videos, PDF Press Kit, Stage Plot, Event Poster, and More...)
NEW Album "Too Much Town" released in 2011, produced by Eric "Rocoe" Ambel (Del Lords, Steve Earl)
South85 blends a country rock style of originals with bluegrass overtones. With a highly engaging and energetic show, they are on level with country and southern rock's best groups. Loretta Lynn meets Gretchen Wilson!
With roots deep in the Carolinas, South85 blends country, folk, southern rock, and bluegrass to give you a listening experience that you won't soon forget. Driven by the original songwriting of Kathy Noonan and the voice of Tracy Wyatt, South85 is in a classification all their own - radio worthy songs along with an atmosphere of a back-porch jam. Named South85 for their origins along the southern interstate in South Carolina, the band chose this name because no matter where they travel, they know they will always take South I-85 back home.
The marked “cowgirl” attitude and lifestyle exemplified by both Tracy and Kathy is interwoven throughout songs of independence, celebration of the south, hope, and plain old fun. South85’s sound is influenced by southern rock legends like Marshall Tucker Band, the Black Crowes, cross-genre Americana artists Old Crowe Medicine Show, Gillian Welch, and the sweet southern classics such as Tammy Wynette and Loretta Lynn. The band may blend a rocking electric telecaster with a banjo or ease an acoustic ballad with dobro and mandolin with their varied sounds and themes. Cover songs the band performs include those by these artists and more in the country and southern rock vein.
Tracy’s a southern gal. Born in Gaffney, South Carolina. She grew up taking vocal lessons as a child with the hopes and aspirations of becoming a singer/entertainer. Her influences growing up were Tammy Wynette, Loretta Lynn, Dottie West, Skeeter Davis, the Judd’s, Waylon Jennings, and Charlie Daniels – just to name a few. Her biggest influence was her mother, who exposed her to all genres of music as well as handing down her gift of voice. From the age of 2 years old, she has sang and entertained for anyone who would listen – family, friends, strangers, and now her fans.
Hailing from the beautiful foothills of upstate South Carolina, Kathy grew up in the little country town of Campobello. As a child she absorbed the many different styles of music from her granddaddy’s country classics to her older brothers' rock influences of the 70’s. Kathy’s songwriting spans from folk to pop, carrying with it a mix of influences primarily from the alternative artists she was exposed to in her mid twenties. Gillian Welch, David Rawlings, and Lucinda Williams are among her favorite songwriters.
Mike is originally from the small town of Phenix, VA. After living in Radford, VA for seven years, he relocated to Charlotte, NC. A guitar player of sixteen years, Mike has been involved with many musical projects and bands over the years including Fool's Parade, The Lazy Sundays, Jerry Joe Reno, and Mudfoot. While his first love is blues guitar, Mike also has a great appreciation for many other genres including jazz, rock, funk, folk, and recently his love of bluegrass has inspired him to pick up the dobro, banjo, mandolin, and fiddle. His influences include Steely Dan, Bonepony, Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Frank Zappa, and The Beatles.
Though he focuses on bass duties in South 85, Andy also plays guitar, mandolin and banjo. He started playing guitar in high school, and has played in bands ever since, meeting Mike and Ashley when they formed the blues rock band Mudfoot in 2003. Primarily a guitarist in most bands, Andy switched to bass full time when joining South 85.
Andy’s influenced by bluegrass, blues, rock, jam, country, jazz and metal. Among his many influences – The Grateful Dead, Stevie Ray Vaughan, The Black Crowes, Jimmy Herring, Steve Kimock, Matt Flinner, George Porter, Ryan Adams, James Hetfield, Dan Tyminski and Gov’t Mule.
Eric studied percussion at Lenoir Rhyne College and East Carolina University before pursuing a career in IT. He took some time off from the music world until he met his friend (and our current bass player) Andy Burger. He picked up the sticks again, studied for a year plus with Jeff Sipe, played with a few other bands along the way, including a stint with Andy and Mike in a post-Mudfoot project, and well we couldn’t let him get away!
South85 originally got its start at Barney Barnwell's Plum Hollow Festival in Campobello, SC! www.moonshiners.com
Visulite Theater - Charlotte, NC
Neighborhood Theater - Charlotte, NC
The Milestone - Charlotte, NC
The Double Door - Charlotte, NC
Carolina Entertainment Complex - Marion, NC
(Rowdy Friends Tour/ Marion Country Music Festival)
FOX Charlotte - Live on Fox News Rising TV
Music on Main - Spartanburg, SC
The Moonshiner's Reunion and Plum Hollow Festival
Taterfest - Shelby, NC
Puckett's Farm Equipment - Derita, NC
KOA Campground - Myrtle Beach, NC
The Evening Muse - Charlotte, NC
Dolce Vita - Charlotte, NC
Mac's Speed Shop - Charlotte, NC
The Sylvia Theater - York, SC
National Wild Turkey Federation - Saluda, SC
Private Party - VA, NC, SC, GA
Girls Rock Girls Rule Tour Opener
Shelby Art of Sound Festival - Shelby, NC
Beards BeCause Charity Event
The Charlotte Music Awards
The City of Pineville Fall Festival
Louis Bar & Grill - Shleby, NC
The Knothole - Lake Wylie, SC
Lil Dz - Spartanburg, SC
The Thirsty Beaver - Charlotte, NC
Cottonfest - Cowpens, SC
Ground Zero - Spartanburg, SC
The Eagles Nest Ampitheater - Banner Elk, NC
Wompus Fest 07 July 4th - Spartanburg, SC
Kathy Noonan - Acoustic Guitar, Harmony Vocals
Tracy Wyatt - Lead Vocals
Mike Bader - Lead Guitar
Andy Burger - Bass
Eric Howard - Drums
2011: NEW 2011 CD release "Too Much Town"
Produced by Eric "Roscoe" Ambel
2008: South85 Debut CD "El Camino" May 2008
Both Available on iTunes, Digstation, CD Baby, etc.
03 Carson City
05 Girl Back Then
01 What About You
10 Too Much Town
06 Can That Someone Be You
04 I'm No Leaving
09 Take Me On A Ride
08 Ground So Hard
11 Mama's 45
5 Questions for Kathy Noonan
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As primary songwriter for Americana outfit South 85, Kathy Noonan writes songs on par with Nashville...As primary songwriter for Americana outfit South 85, Kathy Noonan writes songs on par with Nashville’s hit makers.
She’s trying to become one herself by working with a song plugger (“they shop your songs independently to artists and producers”). Noonan, who lives on a farm in Clover, S.C., spoke about the songs on South 85’s 2008 debut and 2011’s “Too Much Tow.”
Q. What was the first song you wrote?
“El Camino.” I started writing (it) as soon as I started playing guitar in my early 20s. I wrote it out in full and sent it to one of my best friends. She said, “There’s a lot of cowgirl spirit in it. I hope you’ll put music to it.” I sat on it for a year or two.… Willie Evans, a blues player who was one of my early mentors, said, “That’s your challenge. Try to finish one.” Sometimes a song needs to sit and brew in your mind or your heart.
Q. Where does the sexiness in the lyrics come from?
When I was younger I was really shy. I had this spirit that was rebellious – on the inside. (My writing) kind of shocked me at first… The line in “El Camino” about “my lower state line” surprised Tracy (Wyatt, vocalist for South 85). She was like, “Wow Scooter, that’s kind of sexy there.”
Q. At your CD release show in August you mentioned “Carson City” is about a couple in the audience. What is the backstory?
(It’s) probably my favorite song on the album. Ryan Westbrook (of the Charlotte band Blackwater Redemption) was our first bass player.… (He and his wife) moved to Carson City as a fresh start. We just loved them so much as a couple and they had a little girl and twins on the way. That song was what I imagined of them and how much I wanted them to make it as a family.
Q. Are there other tracks that stand out to you?
“Sex and Laundry” for that type of chord progression. There’s a generic set of chord progressions that popular songs have, but what’s fun is to get out of that norm. You expect a song to go to… verse, chorus, verse, bridge. I love pushing those boundaries where you get into more advanced technique. I’ve studied a lot of hit songs. That’s a great exercise to become aware of what’s happening in a song from a technical point of view.
Q. Did you read many books on the subject?
I found this book “Writing Music for Hit Songs” by Jai Josefs in fifth grade. I wrote my name in it and I never looked at it again, but by God I pulled that book out when I started getting serious about songwriting. It’s full of the best advice. I refer to it still. It’s the one and only book.
2011's best music from Charlotte musicians
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South 85: "Too Much Town" Between Kathy Noonan's songwriting and Tracy Wyatt's fire, this South C...South 85: "Too Much Town"
Between Kathy Noonan's songwriting and Tracy Wyatt's fire, this South Carolina combo boasts an entire catalog of strong and heartbreaking tales from the female perspective that should be in rotation on country radio.
South 85: Highway to Fame
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Country rockers South 85 are setting local stages on fire by Courtney Devores On a hot August ni...Country rockers South 85 are setting local stages on fire
by Courtney Devores
On a hot August night, as local country-rock quintet South 85 nears the end of a blazing two-hour set, the stage at the Visulite fills with friends and fans. The scene captures what the band, which just released its second album, Too Much Town, is all about—a good time.
When South 85 burst on to the Charlotte music scene five years ago, lead singer Tracy Wyatt’s (below, right) stage presence—a homegrown hell raiser who could wring buckets of emotion (sultry, sad, or funny) out of guitarist/vocalist Kathy Noonan’s songs and lead a boot stomping, booty shaker—grabbed audiences’ attention. Listen harder and you’ll hear Noonan’s Nashville-ready songwriting, guitarist Mike Bader’s blues chops, and the tight rhythm section of Andy Burger and Eric Howard. Added to Wyatt’s sass, it’s a dynamic combination.
“Our plan was to play coffee shops,” says Bader, settling into a booth at Lupie’s Café. The comment garners laughs from Wyatt and Noonan. Noonan recruited Eric Ambel, a one-time Blackheart (as in Joan Jett and …) who owns a club in the East Village and a studio in Brooklyn, to produce Too Much Town. “I liked the songs,” he says. “There’s no trickery involved in how good they sound.”
South85 Plays the First Marion Country Music Festival
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The Carolina Entertainment Complex is proud to announce the First Marion Country MusicFest. Headlin...The Carolina Entertainment Complex is proud to announce the First Marion Country
MusicFest. Headliners for the 3 day event are: Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Famers Lynyrd
Skynyrd; country music legend Hank Williams, Jr. the original Redneck Woman –
Gretchen Wilson and country music’s latest shining star Sugarland. They’ll all be right
here in Marion, South Carolina for three days of great music, good food, tons of fun…
and, the best time you’ll ever have in South Carolina!
Wall-to-wall music for the three-day festival -- artists will be performing on two stages from
noon ‘til midnight. Live on-stage performances by: James Otto, Trent Tomlinson, Phil
Stacey, Danielle Peck, Fisher Stevenson, Ashton Shepherd, Jeffery Allen Edwards and
Southern Blue. Local and regional talent will be showcased all 3 nights… the list
includes: the Outlaw Symphony, Sick Stooges, Diamondback, Rebel 101, David Lambert
& The Carolina Rails, Trey Davis, Jeffery Allen Gunnells, James Hass "Elvis", Tammy's
Tangent, Barry Brown Band, Sideswiped with special guests Jannie Trudell, Viper
Recording Artist P.J. Pacifico, Outlaw Symphony, “The Little Girl with the Big Voice,”
Gabbie Rae, Sister Moonshine, South 85, Saddle Creek Band.
All Day and all night -- Thursday, Friday and Saturday – the best in country, southern
rock, acoustic, rock, alternative country, classic rock, country pop and more -- groups and
artists from around the country will grace the stages and entertain fans in the biggest and
best summer concert in South Carolina… there’s on-site camping and RV’s are welcome.
Tickets go on sale March 25. Information updates on artists and schedule will be
available online at www.entertaincarolina.com or call the “Ticket Hotline at: 843/423-0077
and don’t forget: www.myspace.com/carolinaentertainmentcomplex!!!
Carolina Entertainment Complex “… for the best time you can have in South Carolina!”
South85 Nominated for Best Country Act
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Only one out of five acts based across both Carolinas, South85 was nominated as Best Country Group a...Only one out of five acts based across both Carolinas, South85 was nominated as Best Country Group at the 2008 Carolina Music Awards.
What's New? South85 | El Camino
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South 85 – “El Camino” South 85 ***1/2 South 85 plays the Sweet Tea Jubilee on Saturday. ww...South 85 – “El Camino”
South 85 ***1/2
South 85 plays the Sweet Tea Jubilee on Saturday.
At the center of the South Carolina four-piece's debut album are guitarist Kathy Osborne's clever lyrics, which range from poignant to humorous. Although not doggedly feminist, “El Camino” is a collection of songs for women who aren't hiding their rough edges, much like the ladies who lead South 85. Not since Loretta Lynn has a singer embraced her Southern-ness so wholeheartedly as Tracy Wyatt, whose twangy accent frequently creates two syllables from one.
“El Camino” isn't a slick Nashville production, which makes it more authentically country than what regularly comes out of Nashville. It's unapologetically real and tough, with songs about women discovering independence. Besides a knack for memorable melodies (“Hold Me,” “Firefly”), Osborne writes the sexiest country-rock lyrics this side of Lucinda Williams (“Sex and Laundry,” “El Camino”).
Too country for Nashville? Too sexy for country? That's not a bad thing.
She's So Skirt! Kathy Noonan (Osborne), Songwriter
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...Hooked from the moment she first picked up the guitar, she loves being able to set her poetry to ......Hooked from the moment she first picked up the guitar, she loves being able to set her poetry to music.
"When you write songs, it's a humbling experience," says Kathy, whose songs are often about a woman's journey to empowerment and self-independence. "You hope that people will relate and get something out of it."
Although she wrote and wrote, building up a large body of work, Kathy never considered herself much of a singer, so her music didn't have an audience. It wasn't until her friend Tracy started winning karaoke contests that she decided to put together a band—with Tracy singing at the helm.
The band, South 85, performs Kathy's original country/pop songs, and their first album, "El Camino," which shares the name of a track that was one of the first songs Kathy wrote, was released last month. "We love entertaining people," Kathy says.
Walter Stewart (President, Soul City Records) from "Coming Home"
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“... I saw this band, South85, these two girls and some musicians, and I said, “Wow, these girls ha...“... I saw this band, South85, these two girls and some musicians, and I said, “Wow,
these girls have songs.” The performance was good, and they had one song, “Sex and
Laundry,” about which I asked why isn’t this song on the radio. I had the opportunity
to see them last week for the second time at the Visulite. Man, have they come around. I
mean I’ve seen a progression. I’ve seen a stage presence. I’ve seen songwriting. I’ve seen
just musicianship. Overall, I think that’s a band that could definitely make it big time if
they just keep going the way that they’re going now.”
These Acts Could Go Big
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“....Strengths: Attitude, harmonies, Osborne’s songwriting and Wyatt’s voice and presence. They als...“....Strengths: Attitude, harmonies, Osborne’s songwriting and Wyatt’s voice and
presence. They also speak to the women in the crowd. ‘We grew up in, and will hopefully
be a part, of a male-dominated industry. To be two women fronting a band and Kathy
writing the originals is amazing to me. We want the women in the audience to feel
as important as we do on stage.’ Adds Osborne, ‘I really try to give a unique female
perspective in my songs.’....”
Long Black Veil - Johnny Cash
Cry, Cry Cry - Johnny Cash
Cheater Cheater - Joey & Rory
4th July – Shooter Jennings
Strawberry Wine – Deanna Carter
Georgia on a Fast Train – Billy Joe Shaver
Have Mercy – The Judds
Satin Sheets – Jeanne Pruett
Wagon Wheel – Old Crow Medicine Show
Manifesto #1 – Shooter Jennings
Southern Streamline – John Fogerty
Love is a Rose – Linda Ronstadt
Cotton Fields - CCR
All Gonna Die Someday – Kasey Chambers
Willin – Little Feat
Six Days on the Road – Dave Dudley
Redneck Girl – Bellamy Bros
Break Down Here – Julie Roberts
Miss Ohio – Gillian Welch
Tues Gone – Lynyrd Skynrd
Hillbilly Girl – Lacy J Dalton
Originals Performed Include Tracks from "Too Much Town" and "El Camino" CD's.
We can play up to three 45min sets or two 1-1/2hr sets. Please specify in request.
There are no upcoming dates at this time.