Dirtfoot
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Dirtfoot

Shreveport, Louisiana, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2003

Shreveport, Louisiana, United States
Established on Jan, 2003
Band Alternative Americana

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"Neighborhood Hero Saves The Day Again"

In the wake of an awful set of circumstances, faced with the possibility of a non-existent fall music extravaganza, the fabulous folk of Deadhead Productions have again stepped up to the plate with their announcement of Hillberry 2: The Harvest Moon Festival. Earlier this year we told you all about the 1stHillberry Music Festival that occurred this August on the Farm outside Eureka Springs, Arkansas… well party people, get ready to do it all over again!

Just a few hours before the official announcement of the fate of phases, rumors on the internet were abound that the Midwest may be slightly lack luster in the fall festival department. Regardless of the reasons, nothing is standing in the way of Hillberry 2: The Harvest Moon Festival as the opening line on the Facebook event states: “THIS EVENT WILL NOT BE CANCELLED!” Even this is music to our ears.

The lineup shows that not only do the organizers have the backs of patrons, but of performers too. Artists that were scheduled to play phases were left scrambling to fill dates and connect tour dots. Thankfully many of those performers landed on the Hillberry 2: The Harvest Moon lineup and now have a stellar venue to visit later this fall. The first installment of headliners included Leftover Salmon, Lettuce, Wookiefoot, The Motet, and a Jerry Garcia Tribute by Larry Keels and his All-Star ensemble. A 2nd installment proclaimed ALO would join their ranks as well and announced several other performers.

Rounding out the OBESE lineup are Louisiana’s folk, rock, gypsy, punk ensemble, Dirtfoot, which I liken to a fusion of all things rough and lovely. Wildman and Festival Fanatic, Andy Frasco and The U.N. will surely fuel something so raucous there will be a new rule about it… which will probably be broken next year. A reunion by Don’t Stop Please, a modern local legend that transcends genre labels will have you saying their name by the end of the weekend.

Often starting reggae and ending sets in a psychedelic fusion, Jon Wayne and The Pain isn’t to be missed. Portland’s up and coming alternative country ensemble, Fruition, will serve up a homemade slice of wholesome Americana music. Tyrannosaurus Chicken, who closed out the inaugural Hillberry Festival last month in a southern/delta blues raging ramble have become a regular staple and we are glad to see them back on the Farm. The Rumpke Mountain Boys with their special blend of self-proclaimed ‘trashgrass’ are also back for a second time this year.

The Farm. This little piece of heaven is right outside the bustling Eureka Springs, Arkansas and has many amenities including bathhouses (not included in ticket), and shuttles to The General Store for packaged beverages and camping supplies. 360 degree views from the site located on the top of a mountain with only a few other mountain tops in sight give way to the feeling of being perched in an eagles nest with the Mark Twain National Forest at your back. Most of the venue is suited for car camping in a well kempt field with wooded area in the back perfect for hammocking (no car parking allowed, drop offs only) .

Near the back of the venue is a secluded, yet frequently visited shrine to the late Jerry Garcia that pulls a different emotion out of every visitor. I noticed how quiet groups were once they arrived. Even with camera in hand and at the ready, I felt intrusive and inappropriate taking photos while patrons visited The Shrine. There is something truly powerful here.

A pre-party at Georges Majestic Lounge on October 10th with local favorites: Arkansauce, The Squarshers, and Opal Agafia & the Sweet Nothings will get things started and sooth anticipations while we wait. I look forward to seeing you all on the Farm this October for the Midwest’s brand new event: Hillberry 2: The Harvest Moon Music Festival! - http://www.gratefulweb.com/


"You’ll find Van Cliburn on your left, just past Elvis"

Welcome, folks!

I hope you enjoyed the concert out there in Shreveport Common, but you have arrived at the Common’s new pride and joy, The Music Museum of Northwest Louisiana.

Where to begin? That’s always a tough one.

Well, you’re in the grand entrance hall now and the mural that covers the whole north wall over there presents only the musicians who came out of northwest Louisiana — the ones who were born here, not the ones who came and stayed or the ones who stayed for a while passing through.

You won’t find Elvis in the mural, but we do call him the King of the Louisiana Hayride wing. But there’s Huddie Ledbetter there standing on that cotton bale with his 12-string and you’ll notice how the artist painted Kix Brooks, James Burton, Ron Johnson, and Kenny Wayne Shepherd all jamming together.

You see Brian and Brady Blade there both keeping time on their drum kits? Oh, that’s the Centenary College Choir singing backup — or maybe just doing their good old traditional “Dry Bones” number or maybe “Tenebrae.”

That just happens to be “Good Night, Irene” we’re listening to now by Lead Belly, who was born and raised in nearby Mooringsport and spent a good bit of time playing and singing in the music halls and houses of — shall we say — ill repute just blocks from where you are standing.

Anyway, speaking of Lead Belly, let’s all move first into the blues room where he is prominently featured. Notice the blues timeline that goes from Lead Belly to and Kenny Wayne Shepherd and includes Omar Shariff, Oscar Buddy Woods, Ed Schaffer, Jesse Thomas, and Buddy Flett.

Yes, ma’am, the museum’s architect is Shreveport’s own, Mike McSwain — Son! Please don’t run down that ramp. Thank you. You are free to dance.

Now, if we can move along into the Gospel Room where Brady Blade Senior is featured on that wall and the Ever Ready Gospel Singers are over there. I’m not ashamed to say I get chill bumps in this room every time I come in. You, too, huh? Yep, hard to sit down in here. That music just makes you want to stand and put your hands in the air!

And this is our biggest room, the Louisiana Hayride Room.

You’ll notice a line of folks all the way around, folks who got their start in that show and so many others who played weekly, live, to a huge chunk of America through KWKH radio. Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Faron Young, Johnny Horton, Slim Whitman, Tilman Franks, Bob Wills, Kitty Wells, George Jones, Buck Owens, Jim Reeves…Lordy!

I would run out of breath trying to name everyone who played on that show from 1948 to 1960!

Why, if you stick around long enough in here, Maggie Warwick herself will come through and tell you stories about singing regularly on that stage right over there cross the street.

And there, of course — please remove your caps — there’s the young hip-gyrating, lip-lifting, whippersnapper, Elvis. He will never leave this building.

And this is the Classical Room featuring the gifted Van Cliburn, a native of Shreveport and some might say America’s greatest pianist. Yes, that is the nine-foot grand piano he played in 1963 during a concert in Shreveport’s First Baptist Church. And there is the display the other Shreveport native pianist, Art Ferante, of world-wide Ferante and Teicher fame.

And for those more into C&W, we are button-busting proud of this room. In here, you’ll meet and learn about Governor Jimmie Davis’ musical career. (He’s also in the Gospel Room, by the way.) Y’know, he taught girls how to yodel when he was a teacher at Shreveport’s old Dodd College.

And there is that long row of C&W stars that lived in or are connected closely with this community and region: Kix Brooks of course, along with Floyd Cramer, Claude King, Dale Hawkins, and Johnny Horton.

A lot of folks don’t realize Hank Williams Jr. was born in Shreveport. And our organizers were not quite sure where to put the bluegrass group from Cotton Valley, the Cox Family, so they ended up in this room.

And then there’s the Pop, R&B, Rap, and Rock Room, featuring Ron Johnson, Jay Davis, Eddie Giles, Hurricane Chris, William Oliver Swafford (“Oliver”), Joe Stampley and the Uniques, and legendary bassist, Joe Osborne.

Every once in a while Stan Lewis takes over the tour in there and the lucky tourists count their blessings. Guitar whiz James Burton is featured in there, and, if I’m not out of line, you may want to visit the James Burton Guitar Museum later, spitting distance from here—that is if you have not had enough music history on this tour.

I scratch my head over the avant-garde music of The Residents, but that giant eyeball was worn by one of them during a concert in San Francisco. Not exactly pop or rock, but hey, takes all kinds! Right?

There’s a new room dedicated to young artists. It’s being debated whether to call it the Rising Stars Room or the Room of Potential. Right now, we are prepping it for names like Maggie Koerner, Matthew Davidson, John Henry Crawford, Dirtfoot, Hydrogen Child, Cole Vosbury, and Bossier City’s Jared Leto.

Stay tuned. Oh, and there is a composer-songwriter room in the planning stages. Can’t leave out Myra Smith, Victoria Williams, Jesse Winchester, Troy Verges, Kermit Poling and James LeBlanc now can we?

This building would not have been possible without the generosity of those individuals, local businesses, and corporations. Oh, and if you do NOT leave here humming a tune, I will personally give you your money back. They don’t call this neck of the north Louisiana piney woods musical heaven for nothing.

Neil Johnson, photographer and upcoming rookie Red River Revel artist. He can be reached at njohnson@njphoto.com. - Shreveporttimes.com


"CD Reviews - Coming Up for Air"

4-2-2014

There’s no way Dirtfoot’s fourth album – Coming Up For Air – could have been recorded in the daylight. Oh, don’t get me wrong: the Shreveport, LA-based band will make you grin and dance and hoot and holler throughout the album’s 13 tracks – but there’s always a wee bit of darkness handy. Or weirdness. Or something. But it’s cool.

It’s just that you’re way-deep in the middle of the erotic tango of “Giving Up On Love” before you realize you’re doing the crazy low-dip with a skeleton. And the door’s locked.

Or consider “Hypocrisy”, which lures you in with the promise of some fuzzed-out-guitar-and-booming-bass-driven road music before shape-shifting into a Saturday night barn dance in Hell, complete with laughing demons and a madly-blowing saxophone (Scott Gerardy – a dangerous man with a reed) and those damn cheese-filled rats in the cellar. And the door’s locked again.

That locked door thing may not be a problem for you, however, as you’re gonna wanna see what’s next. The six wild-ass multi-instrumentalists of Dirtfoot keep it changed up and constantly swirling: here comes “Sweet Love”, all greasy leather and switchblade cool and slam-bang drums and craaaaaaaazeeeeeee horns (the Rebirth Brass Band!) and sinister banjo (if anyone can make a banjo sound sinister, Dirtfoot’s J Bratlie can) and just about the time you figger you’re going to make it through the night unscathed, whoooooooooaaaaaaaaaaah – everything takes a taffy-limbed lurch sideways and you’re trying to stay upright as “I’m Going Home” stumbles along, all drawled-out vox (frontman Matt Hazelton), slurred horn lines, and Daniel Breithaupt playing what could be either a xylophone or vibes or a rib cage. But it’s okay; it’s okay – you can do this … but there’s no way that you’re prepared for the wild midnight gallop of “No Good Man” – Bratlie’s banjo whanging foreheads with Hazelton’s oil can guitar – and who knew a camel could run like that?

So you’re getting the picture by now, right? Dirtfoot’s Louisiana heritage is always handy in their music, but they haul cool rhythms and moods out of thin air and create big, big pictures that will stick with you long after the music fades. (Me, I’m still trying not to think about the “roaches on the refrigerator like magnets” of “Amelia Earhardt”.

Dirtfoot’s bassman Nathan Woods and drummer Derek Russell are the underpinnings of all the madness – haybale punk or Cossack hippie or greaser waltz: you name it, they can thumpwump it out for you. And look at the list of buds who make cameos throughout Coming Up For Air : that’s Railroad Earth’s Timmy Carbone applying some sweet fiddle to “This Old Pride” (think Tom Waits getting mellow as he warms his hands over a burning trash can); Zoe Bratlie joins in the slowly escalating chorus of “Break My Bones”, eventually spiraling off into the night with the rest of ‘em; Papa Mali adds some guitar raunch to the lap-grind of “John Zooke”; and Brady Blade – he who produced this delightful madness – even got into the act himself with some cool congas on the aforementioned “Giving Up On Love”.

There’s a lot going on here, but never too much. If Coming Up For Air was a Broadway musical, the crew would be crazy-busy shifting the scenery – but the cool thing about Dirtfoot is, they maintain a definite presence through all sorts of settings.
The bottom line: this is the sound of some hellishly-talented players with quirky imaginations having some fun. In the dark.
If these guys had been at Woodstock, Wavy Gravy would’ve told the crowd, “Don’t eat the brown acid – but have all the green okra you want.”

*****

Brian Robbins warms his hands over a burning trash can in the back alley of www.brian-robbins.com - jambands.com - Brian Robbins


"Sheet metal shank: Dirtfoot's hard new album, "Coming Up for Air,"might twerk the old turntable"

"We. We run this town. Let's turn this motherf*cker upside down." Whether Dirtfoot's energy was planing off as the group enters its eighth year is answered by the album "Coming Up for Air." It snorts and rocks the trough like the guys have been delivered again.

The above opening line, from their original "I am a man," sets the tone for an album that juggles steel cojones. By the second number, "Hypocrisy," I realized ("Rats are in the cellar. Rats are filled with cheese.") that the drumming (Derek Russell, Daniel Breithaupt) is more muscular than ever.

"Sweet love" begins with tight rockabilly energy and then throws out devastating horn lines to punctuate the anger ("I'd like to go back in time and kick some ass.") Seems it was a good idea to bring ReBirth Brass Band up from New Orleans for the sessions. Cut after cut the ReBirth fits Dirtfoot like a sheet metal shank.

Maniacal saxman Scott Gerardy plays like a tripping lead guitarist. Tune after tune he pushes the arrangements over the top.

The connections between the voices of Jim Morrison and Matt Hazelton are more apparent to me than ever. J Bratlie's voice soars in counterpoint. The melodies seem defiant.

I'm not sure if Dirtfoot likes to be called a Klezmer band from a Goy town, but they are. "Break my bones" is a jigging Levantine romp.

"The night John Zooke died" features the siliconic slide of former Shreveporter Papa Mali. It's the voodoo side of Dirtfoot. One of the pleasures of this band is that the clarity of the vocals reveals a sure sense of storytelling, if for the sake of stories noir. They tell tales about love burned out in "Heroin" and of a tequila woman in "Amelia Earhart."

After over an hour of music the sextet barks out the demonic, pounding "Underwater Turtle." This nihilist screed (did bassist Nathan Woods help write this one?) sounds something like George Clinton meets the Clash. "Turtle" could become the sig tune for the band in this era.

Highly recommended. - Robert Trudeau - Shreveport Blog


"The Alternate Root - Artists of the Week"

There is this sound that opens Dirtfoot’s recent release, ‘Bone Sessions’. It’s the sound of a take off.......jet, car, etc. It fits. Even the quiet moments on ‘Bone Sessions’ push forward that is one part Sunday morning salvation and one fire and hellish rhythm that fills the air like audio brimstone. The six players group pick up saxophone, banjo, guitars, up right bass, pots ‘n pans, xylophone, drum sticks, bells and have at it. Dirtfoot does not have a rhythm section as much as they are a rhythm section. Their marching beat is more street parade for the most part. Things do mellow, the beat slows to a strut like on “Pullin’ Up the Stakes” and “Devoted Mama”, where the guys come on like some off- planet, Star Wars-type house band, or an almost whispered foot tap like on “Blue Eyes” and “Snappin’ Turtle”.

For me, it’s when the band gets into the groove and connects the beats that things lock into place. The band describes their sound as a dose of Gypsy Punk Country Grumble boogie. Yeah, that! On songs like “Rhinetone Ring”, “Footsteps”, “Watusi”, “Cast My Plan”, Dirtfoot seduce on many levels with a beat that makes for good trance weather, plugging in and just letting it ride. Coming out of Shreveport, Louisiana, Dirtfoot play all acoustic instruments with an electric edge to the results. - www.thealternateroot.com


"Beancans, Tornadoes and Voodoo Boogie | an Interview with DIRTFOOT"

At the core of one’s infatuation with music is the perpetual notion of the unknown melodies awaiting you around any city corner or prairie dive bar, any television commercial or radio station. The idea that the individual or group you may never (want to) get out of your head could be at the end of the next interstate exit or taking the stage coincidentally on the same night you have off and decided to hit the town.

It is a unique and beautiful feeling, one that sends shivers down your spine and goosebumps up your arm. It is an unpredictable and chaotic feeling, one only found in the confines of live music.

Wandering the mysterious and dark woods of northwest Arkansas last summer, I was curious with what Wakarusa had hidden for me to discover. Away from the main stage. Away from the masses.

In the distance I saw a bright light illuminating the trees and faraway campsites. At the source of the light was Dirtfoot, a Louisiana voodoo-rock sextet (Matt Hazelton – lead vocals/guitar, J Bratlie – banjo/backup vocals, Scott Gerard – saxophone/backup vocals, Nathan Woods – bass, Daniel Breithaupt – percussion, Lane Bayliss – drums), headlong into their late-night set. Their presence took my senses by storm. Like a crisp fall breeze, the sound whirled around my body.

Goosebumps quickly emerging from the depths of my body:

“As Thursday night turned into Friday morning‚ I came across the biggest surprise of the weekend. Wandering down endless paths and into dark woods‚ I finally tracked down the Backwoods stage‚ a tiny wooden structure carefully tucked away from the swarms.

Billed as “gypsy funk country grumble boogie‚” I eagerly stood and shook my bones to the tantalizing sounds of the Shreveport‚ Louisiana group. It was dirty. It was claustrophobic. It was voodoo rock as fire dancers twirled around the side of the stage.

Their mix of psychobilly‚ blues and funk had my underwear all in a twist as I danced with reckless abandon to “Devoted Mama” or “Break My Bones” (which included the sounds of a rubber chicken‚ garbage cans‚ washboards and soup cans full of beans).”

The group is currently recording their next album, which is predicted to be released by the end of 2010. For now, an endless tour schedule lies in their crosshairs, while the intent to push forth until they see the light at the end of tunnel fuels their souls.

Garret K. Woodward: What is Dirtfoot?

J. Bratlie: Dirtfoot is group of guys that makes crazy raucous front porch foot-stomping music.

GKW: How would you describe the sound? Who are the influences?

JB: The sound has been described as “gypsy-punk-country-grumble-boogie” by some and that is the handle we prefer. Our music has many influences from Tom Waits, Nick Cave, Morphine, to Beck and They Might Be Giants, and many more.

GKW: What does improvisational music mean to you? How does it affect the approach of the band?

JB: While most of our pieces are “written”, we do have a few songs that allow for real improvisation. We typically only pull these out when the feeling and vibes are right. Those are usually some crazy nights.

GKW: How did the band come around?

JB: The group began with a tornado. April 2000. Shreveport, Louisiana. Well, the actual band did not start then, but that was when Matt and I met and began a friendship that led to jamming and the band coming together. An Easter tornado had come through Shreveport and dropped a tree on Matt’s house. I was passing by, stopped, and started chatting. The rest is history. After jamming together for a year or two, what is now Dirtfoot began to form through a constant rotation of band members.

GKW: What are you thoughts on the current music industry? How do you want Dirtfoot to be different, or contribute to the evolution?

JB: The music industry is constantly changing and we are going with the flow. We have stayed a do-it-yourself band just for this reason. With modern technology, it’s very easy to get the music out to the people. The real trick is touring. With escalating costs for travel, it becomes more difficult for longer, drawn out tours, so we have to play harder and smarter. Hopefully we’ll be able to continue to build the Dirtfoot machine ourselves and one day if the right deal comes along, we may consider it.

GKW: How receptive have audiences been to the creation onstage?

JB: The audience is key to our show. Many of our songs are built on a “call and response” theme, where interaction is a must. We even make shaker cans, we call them beancans, because we take two soup cans, fill them some beans, and duct tape them together. We pass these out to the crowd and they become the seventh member, a giant percussion section. It’s an awesome sound to hear so many cans shaking at the same time.

GKW: What do you like or dislike about being on the road constantly?

JB: We love to travel and see the new sites. We recently gigged in New York City, a first time trip for many in the band, and it - www.therfw.com


"Wakarusa Interview: J Bratlie of Dirtfoot"

Dirtfoot, a six-piece gypsy punk rock band from Shreveport, LA, has become a staple of the Wakarusa Music Festival. Furthermore, they’re strong supporters of the unofficial festival Chompdown (a free breakfast by the people and for the people of Wakarusa) where the band provides morning entertainment as hungry campers file in for Friday morning grub. After this year’s Chompdown came to a conclusion, Dirtfoot vocalist and banjoist J Bratlie took a few minutes to chat with me about their recently released high-profile music video, the band’s ongoing involvement with Wakarusa, and explains how the beginnings of Dirtfoot were born of a tornado tragedy more than ten years ago.

MOJO: Tell me about the video for “Cast My Plans” from your newly released album. The concept for a prison narrative was discussed as an idea that quickly turned into storyboards. Then, suddenly, you had big names involved in all aspects from cast to crew.

J: We’re friends with William Sadler, the actor who played the warden. He was filming The Mist in Shreveport about four years ago and caught one of our gigs and just started sending us emails every once in a while. He writes songs, so he would send us these songs saying, “This sounds like a Dirtfoot tune. If ya’ll wanna use it, you can use it.” He’s a real cool cat and a funny guy. All of his music has a funny quality to it. So we called him up and said, “You wanna be the warden in our video?” and he said, “Get me there and I’ll do it.”

We rented a 35 millimeter film camera and shot the entire video on it. That, and getting Bill to the set, were our only real expenses. Everything else (AD work, assistant directors, producers, camera operators, etc.) was all donated time. Everybody just wanted to work on the project. The guy that ran our camera actually worked for the movie Wolverine. The fight scene with Daniel was choreographed by an actual stunt coordinator. There were all these big-time movie guys going, “Dirtfoot’s doing a video?! RIGHT ON!”

For anyone that’s interested, there is a special DVD that’s coming out soon that tells the whole story and includes interviews of all the people involved with the video’s creation. Visit their online store to order your own copy.

MOJO: Dirtfoot has a pretty decent history with Wakarusa, correct?

J: This is our fifth year at Waka. We actually got into Wakarusa through one of the Waka Winter Classic Competitions where they pick local bands and people vote. We came in third place out of five bands after driving from Shreveport to Tulsa, but we were happy with the response we got. After the gig, the guy running the thing said, “We really like you guys. You may be getting a phone call.” So a few months went by and we didn’t hear anything. Whatever, whatever. Then they called us up mid-April/early-May and said “Do you guys wanna play at 11 o’clock on Thursday on the little stage way out in the sticks for free?” and we’re like… “Sure!” We were happy to be involved and to say were going to be a part of the festival.

So, then I had friended Jon Cabrera on MySpace who was doing the Chompdown. That was the first year for the Chomp and Jon was like, “Hey, you guys are kind of an acoustic band. You wanna set up and play with a breakfast?” We expected it to be 50 people, a friends-of-friends sort of thing. And this was when Waka was still in Kansas. It was back in a little corner of the campgrounds and everybody in that corner heard about it and came over. People actually brought food and it got bigger and we ended up feeding about 250 kids.

MOJO: You guys have become a hugely popular band in a relatively short amount of time. How long has Dirtfoot been around?

J: Well, the lead singer and I (who are kind of the core of the group) were brought together through a tornado in 2000. I lived down the street from the guy and didn’t know him. The tornado dropped a tree on his house. He was out front and I was walkin’ by and was just kind of like “You guys okay?” and he was like “Yea, sure. Wanna see the house?” So he showed me all the destruction and as I’m walking out of the front room, there’s a banjo and a guitar and an accordion. So we started jamming and it just grew from there.

We had a revolving door of musicians for quite a while, about three years. We had numerous percussionists, bass players, drummers. But in the lineup we have now, the bass player is the newest guy. He’s been with us for about a year. Everyone else has been around about five or six years. We call our official start getting out there January of 2006. We won a Battle of the Bands in Shreveport that kind of helped get things going for us, and then from there we started trying to get into festivals.

We got pretty lucky; the guy that runs Wakarusa kind of took a shine to us. And now he’s our manager. We signed with him at the first of the year and The Agency Group out of New York. But up until January 1st of this year, we’ve done everything ourselves- all the bo - www.indymojo.com


"More Wakarusa reviews: Dirtfoot, Edward Sharpe and Balkan Beat Box"

On Thursday night, Dirtfoot put on a heckuva performancein the Outpost Tent. The Shreveport band calls their musical style "Gypsy Punk Country Grumble Boogie." With six members on guitar, banjo, saxophone, upright and electric bass, drums and various percussion instruments, Dirtfoot is known for its awesome shows with an eclectic sound and raucous stage presence.

The audience seemed plenty familiar with the band, and loved every minute of the late night, let's-get-rowdy set. The fans also seemed pretty excited about Dirtfoot's announcement that they're playing two sets at Yonder Mountain String Band's Harvest Music Festival at Mulberry Mountain, scheduled for Oct. 11-13. - www.arktimes.com


"Voodoo Music Experience Ignites an 'Artist Revolution'"


Voodoo Music Experience Ignites an 'Artist Revolution'

October 22, 2007

Festival officials construct platform for budding artists, open video and audio archives.

In an effort to aid aspiring artists, officials for Voodoo Music Experience, New Orleans' landmark music festival slated for Oct. 26-28, have unveiled 'The Artist Revolution,' a new website offering recording artists an alternative outlet to sell their music with neither censorship nor need for approvals. The groundbreaking venture, which will also showcase video and audio offerings from the nine-year-old festival's archives, encourages artists to take their career into their own hands, allowing freedom of expression sans third party record labels or business affiliates. With no registration fees, theartistrevolution.com is active now.

"The revolution is in progress already, this isn't a novel idea," Stephen Rehage, curator of 'The Artist Revolution,' said in a statement. "Prince, Pearl Jam, Dave Matthews, Radiohead and many others have taken advantage of developing technologies to create their independence. 'The Artist Revolution' was designed for emerging artists and for those whose catalogs don't have mainstream distribution. It is for the next Prince who doesn't want to end up as a 'symbol' of an antiquated business model."

To commemorate the site's debut, theartistrevolution.com will offer an exclusive digital release of songsmith Dan Dyer's latest LP 3, which will also be rerecorded live next weekend at the southern festival and distributed via the fresh online venture. Furthermore, the new web site is now showcasing tunes from "Play Voodoo" contest winner Dirtfoot, selected from over 250 bands in Voodoo's talent contest, and set to grace the festival stage's Oct. 26-28.
- Spin.com


"Dirtfoot: Zydeco Voodoo Magic"

---Ginna Wallace

I didn't meet Dirtfoot all at once; I first encountered two of the members playing with another musician I knew, backing him up and calling themselves the Dirty Toes. My musician friend told me he and the boys needed a place to stay for the evening, I'd loved what they played, the front musician was already a good friend of mine, and I consider myself a good judge of character, so I agreed. We closed down the bar, packed up the equipment, and headed to my house for an evening of drinks and video games.

It was a really relaxed evening, and at one point I found one of the Dirty Toes in my kitchen, fiddling around on my laptop. The most amazing sounds were coming out of my computer, and I asked him what on earth he'd done to it. He explained that it was his band's demo album, that I should keep an ear out for them, that they'd be coming to Hot Springs soon and I should definitely try to make the show. After listening to the handful of tracks on the album, I gave my word I'd be there, would drag as many friends as possible, and would put the band up after the show.

Talk about fortuitous moments! We breezed into the show and were promptly handed duct-taped tin cans by their then-promoter which, when shaken, produced a fabulous rattle. The boys kicked off the show with an energy that poured out of the venue and onto the street, we insiders watched as passers-by paused at a window and cocked ears up to the delicious sound before turning and walking up to the door to come on in.

People try to describe Dirtfoot's sound, people may be trying for decades to come. The band describes themselves on their Myspace page (www.myspace.com/mydirtfoot) as being a dose of Gypsy Punk Country Grumble Boogie. I tell my friends this when they ask me what Dirtfoot's like, and then follow it up by saying: They're definitely jazzy blues influenced, they're from Louisiana so they've got that zydeco voodoo magic, and they're a bunch of rowdy young men so they've got that fabulous hopped up energy. They're whiskey-drinking, foot-stomping, ass-shaking music, I tell people, and I dare you to leave their show even the least bit unsatisfied. In fact, I promise people I bribe to shows, if you can make it through even the first song without grinning like an idiot and tapping your foot like a jackhammer, your drinks are on me.

Dirtfoot, my Dirtfoot, how do I love thee? I cannot count the ways. As far as local bands, or as yet unsigned and traveling bands, go, I've never heard better. Many of their songs are in keys you wouldn't normally hear people dancing to, minor or harmonic keys, but somehow they manage and it's amazing. There is a guitarist, a drummer, and a fellow on a big upright bass, a guy playing saxophone while wearing a Mexican wrestling mask (listen for his impression of a train on the only cover you'll hear them do, Johnny Cash's Folsom Prison), another dude beating on pots and pans, throwing confetti, and wearing a crazy animal hat, and one gentleman who manages car sales by day and picks Dirtfoot's banjo by night.
Dirtfoot will be coming back to the Spa City on Thanksgiving weekend, November 25th, and playing at Maxine's - the best damn bar and live music venue in town (www.myspace.com/maxineslive). Tin cans will be rattled, booties will be shaken, feet will be tapped, and the smiles won't quit all night. And I'll make you the same deal I make everyone, if you can make it through the first song without enjoying it, well, drinks are on me. - Nightflying the Entertainment Guide


"Digging in the Dirt"

March 12, 2004
Section: Preview
Page: 12E

Digging in the dirt
JD Ventura
Staff
Times=City

Local band Dirtfoot experiments with sound and music
By J.D. Ventura The Times

A mosaic of sound. The soundtrack to mental collapse. A celebration of noise. This is what the band Dirtfoot is.

They are not jazz, rock, punk, bluegrass, blues, gospel, soul, R&B, country or hip-hop. (Definitely, definitely not hip-hop).

They are here in Shreveport, which is very, very strange.

Strange because they are good enough to succeed somewhere else. At least the few people who have heard them in Shreveport think so. Strange in that something so strange could come from a city that seems unlikely soil from which such absolute strangeness could grow. But it did.

There is Matt Hazelton. Lead singer. A sort of Christ figure, his hair long, his eyes intelligent. A man who is the nucleus of this musical family. The others, like brothers, gather round him, to jam, disciples who get his groove. He holds his guitar lovingly, resting his arms on it, like it's a part of him, a finely tuned prosthetic device.

There is Jason Bratile, the married guy, the white collar dude from Tulsa, Okla., who plays the banjo like a man who never has used a fax machine. He's doing something with Web sites for a living, for the paycheck, for his family: a beautiful, black-haired wife and their little girl. He shows up for practice in his business clothes, burgundy leather shoes shining. His pressed slacks and dry-cleaned shirt are possibly hiding something dark, maybe the part of him that longs to howl, like Matt does.

And Eric Gardner, somewhat shy, a bit serious, quiet, a thinker. His stand-up bass, a big curvy thing, like two wooden question marks pressed together, leans slightly back in his arms, like a dance partner being dipped. He's a new member, hopeful, excited, but reserved, perhaps not willing to acknowledge he's hit on something good, pure, this band. By day he makes signs. By night he is all ears and eyes. His heart beats for music, and photography, another love.

The drummer: Lane Bayliss. An Audi man. A slight guy with a sleek car. Older than the others, but a seasoned musician. A bit jaded. A seen-it-all percussionist who settled down to sell things. Sales. A steady paycheck. Strictly commission, he says. These kids can rock and that's why he has joined them. Their youthful energy is infectious.

Lastly, there is Scotty Gerardy. He loves to cook, and to jam. Sometimes he does both in the cafe where he works. Smelling of food and sweating the music. For years he had put his sax away, until he met Matt, the pied piper, the music man. But first the tornado came through town.

Kitchen chopped in half

That's how it all began. Four years ago when a tornado blew through Shreveport, Jason found Matt, standing on his porch, shortly after a tree decided to test the landlord's homeowner's policy. "He looked like a good time," remembers Jason, after spotting Matt immediately following the disaster. Amidst cracked countertops and scattered shingles, conversation ensued and the two musicians became friends.

It's more than a bit ironic that a powerful, hard-to-predict weather system in some sense marks the creation of Dirtfoot. Their music can be as dizzying as a twister, volatile and uproarious.

One night, not long ago: here they are, jamming in the basement of a friend's loft. Eric and Lane are new to the band - which Matt says has been "a revolving door" with regard to its membership - and they are "learning" their parts to the group's 20 plus song list. Not learning in the way most people think about music, though. This process is more subtle than that. They improvise their way through the songs as only some musicians can. They feel each other. Some call it experimental music. It is, in that they are each experimenting with each others sounds, feeling their way through, like a blind man through a new room. And in that way, every song is fresh and original, as unique as a snowflake, or a tornado.

"It's not like we are taking a saxophone and making it sound like a toilet," says Matt, during another practice session (he's chewing furiously on sunflower seeds in an earnest - but possibly futile - attempt to quit smoking). "It's experimental in that there aren't any rules. It's freedom. If you feel like growling, growl. Feel like barking, bark. Just do it."

There is some structure. It's not musical anarchy. Like the black and white pictures in a new coloring book, Dirtfoot's repetoire consists of solid outlines. If you knew their songs, you could request them. But when it comes time to color those pictures in, all bets are off as to what you'll get. It could be neat, dark magic markers or finger painting in the psyche ward rec room.

It is their lack of restraint, their raw musical impulsiveness that can be so arresting to the handful of people in town who have heard them play. It's also what is so off-putti - Shreveport Times


"Dirtfoot thrills Memphis, Prepares to Release New Album"

Dirtfoot thrills Memphis, Prepares to Release New Album
July 24th, 2008 by Rachelandthecity

While it can sometimes be hard to express the music of many bands in words, there seems to be no lack of colorful adjectives to describe Shreveport, LA's Dirtfoot. From their own distinctive explanation of Gypsy Punk Country Grumble Boogie to the less over-the-top designation of jug band style folk mixed with jazzed-up Americana, they cover a wide array of musical territory. Mixing banjo, guitar, upright bass, drums, sax and percussion, with special guest appearances by everything from xylophones to pots and pans, they are a band that can grab your ear with their unique sound, but shine the brightest when they are playing live. Last weekend their current tour brought them to Otherlands in Memphis, and their entertainingly chaotic set was definitely a crowd pleaser.

As legend has it, Dirtfoot was birthed in the aftermath of a tornado, which seems not only totally believable based on where the are from but perfectly appropriate. From laid back odes to liquor and lovers, to foot-stomping sing-a-longs their sound manages to be effortlessly their own. With the abundance of musical acts on the scene these days, they are certainly a refreshing alternative. Not to mention, it is almost impossible not to at least tap your foot, but more likely jump up and dance along. It is also not surprising that their audiences are often filled with fellow musicians, as was the case in Memphis.

Led by songwriter Matt Hazelton, the sextet have cultivated a style that is soaked in traditional Cajun-tinged instrumentation while still sounding contemporary. Unfortunately, a casual examination of the group could easily result in them being lumped into the hippie-dippie jam band genre. I have to admit, the first time I caught their act that is what I expected. Admittedly, there are certainly some similarities. However, while it is often hard for me to appreciate the meandering musical improvisation of many bands, when Dirtfoot colors outside the lines, the qualities that set them apart result in the music being more enjoyable than annoying.

With two albums and an EP under their belt, the spreading of the gospel has kept them steadily touring, playing everything from pubs to coffee houses, to festivals and music halls. Last year the band was the winner of the "Play Voodoo" contest, garnering a main stage slot at Voodoo Music Experience in New Orleans. Currently they are working on a new album, recording with Chris Bell at Luminous Sound in Dallas, TX. The new album will continue to capitalize on each member's individual yet complimentary styles. They are aiming for an end of summer release date. Dirtfoot's tour schedule has mostly kept them in the south and the Midwest but their route is continuing to widen as they attempt to win new fans one-by-one. In the coming year, look for the bands name on a marquee near you and don't pass up the opportunity to be impressed.

Link to original release:

http://scenestars.net/2008/07/dirtfoot-thrill-memphis-prepare-to-release-new-album.php

- Scenestars.net - Rachel


"Dirtfoot plays winning notes in Battle of the Bands"

January 29, 2006
Section: Local & State
Page: 01B

Dirtfoot plays winning notes in Battle of the Bands
James Ramage

By James Ramage
jramage@gannett.com

Dave Hall sat on a foldout chair alone in a drab 8-by-15-foot dressing room and tuned his guitar not 20 feet from Municipal Auditorium's main stage.

The guitarist for the band The Situation looked down and started strumming a quiet tune. Outside, the hallway leading backstage was a hive of activity.

"The heritage here," he began, "the feet that have stood on that stage before us, the opportunity to feel that minutes before going on stage is pretty amazing."

The Situation is one of six Ark-La-Tex bands that competed Saturday afternoon in the first Battle of the Bands. It took on Dirtfoot, Gypsy Mountain and Reflections Burn, all based in Shreveport, Von Orange of Natchitoches and All Night Records of El Dorado, Ark.

Four hours of studio time at Fairfield Studios was the top prize, but it was playing on the same stage where such music giants as Jerry Lee Lewis, James Burton and Elvis Presley performed and in front of hundreds of fans that brought the biggest thrill, many of the musicians said.

"We've never played on a stage this big before," Scott Gerardy, Dirtfoot's tenor saxophonist, said outside the band's dressing room. "We're talking about the sound out there; it's going to be different from that sense. I've wanted to play on that stage forever. We're ready to play and "¦"

Gerardy's eyes widened as he watched guitar legend James Burton walk by. From the hallway, first act Von Orange's sound on stage competed with Dirtfoot's Aaron Butler practicing his xylophone in the band's dressing room.

As he listened to Von Orange while backstage, Burton leaned slightly forward. A muted purple stage light framed his silhouette.

After finishing, drummer Michael Murphy stood and raised both arms. The group moved its instruments and other equipment as Gypsy Mountain walked on stage to set up its gear.

Seated on an elevated dais overlooking the stage, Carla McKinney and her three sons waited for Gypsy Mountain to set up. Her husband, the band's singer and guitarist Wes McKinney, usually plays in clubs and other small venues. So the children rarely get to watch their father perform, she said.

"Are you excited to see daddy," Carla asked 4-year-old Cody as she scooped him into her arms. Cody nodded and smiled excitedly in response.

Von Orange members, standing in the hallway following their performance and sweaty from the lights, described the experience in a torrent of words.

"Incredible."

"A pure rush."

"Adrenaline's just flowing."

"Lights are really hot."

"I'm kind of sad it was so short because it felt so good," keyboardist Joe Payne Cunningham said.

"I hope they have this again next year and we get to come back," bass guitarist Richard Walsh added.

A security guard standing in the hallway near the stage door showed others a pen-written signature near a shoulder on her yellow T-shirt that read: "To Theresa, I love you. James Burton '06."

Outside their dressing room, Dirtfoot members discussed how to change one of their song's more profane lyrics. Later on stage, singer Matt Hazelton would settle on the drawn out, yet truncated word "bull."

The band would win the grand prize as well as the crowd response category.

Between sets, audience members Gary McCart and Keaton Smith talked quietly. The two 18-year-old Natchitoches residents were enjoying the music, soaking up the atmosphere and checking out the competition.

They're members of the band The Warmup, which soon will start performing in their hometown and Texas, McCart said. "If they do this next year, we'll definitely participate."

Burton came on stage between sets and offered some brief words. Later, near the auditorium's entryway, he spoke about the event's importance.

"So far, this is very exciting; I'm really enjoying it," Burton said, holding a can of Barq's root beer. "They're all good in their own right. Everybody's got a sound that moves in a little different direction. We really need more support for our young, local talent." - Shreveport Times


"Dirtfoot battles for spot as Shreveport's leading band"

12/22/2006
Shreveport Times Preview
It's called Grumble Boogie, but most describe Dirtfoot's sound simply as different.
In the past few years, the band has made a mark on the Shreveport music scene. After winning the Shreveport Times Battle of the Bands in January, 2006 and with their current debut album release "Entertain Me," Dirtfoot is proving it can contend as a local music heavyweight.
Upright Bass player Eric Gardner compares the band to a gumbo, combining all sorts of ingredients into a rich roux of gritty Louisiana sound.
"It brings all styles and sounds together to create something unique and honest," Gardner said. "I think that is what people get so attached to."
On a recent Friday night, Ruston's young locals are drawn to the Sundown Tavern by the gritty sounds made by the Shreveport band.
The bar quickly fills and the evening is typical. Students swap stories about finals and their plans for Christmas break over a pitcher of beer and darts.
Dirtfoot's lead singer Matt Hazelton extends and invitation to the crowd gathered around the stage.
"You're part of the band tonight."
It doesn't matter so much to Dirtfoot if the crowd knows each word, but participating is key to the band's performance.
"The crowd becomes another member of the band," Hazelton said. "We feed off their energy and they make the music better."
As the band plays, the crowd dances and sings along to the music that is familiar, yet distinct from what most have heard before. In addition to Gardner and Hazelton, the band includes Scotty Gerardy on saxaphone, Lane Bayliss on drums, Daniel Breithaupt on percussion and J Bratlie on banjo. To those who have never heard Dirtfoot play, it sounds like a laid-back Saturday night on the bayou. The jambalaya of sounds blends the variety of instruments into a funky tapestry of Louisiana culture.
Tammy Thompson, 26, and Amy Smith, 27, both of Ruston, have seen Dirtfoot perform at Sundown once before and came to hear the band again.
"They definitely have their own style. It's not just a guy on stage with a guitar," Smith said. "The music alone is enough. But them getting the crowd so involved is an added bonus to the show."
An important part to any Dirtfoot show are the bean can shakers. Handed out to audience members, it's amazing what two cans bound together by duct tape and filled with beans can add to a performance. A box of shakers accompanies the band wherever they play and have become a signature to the group's performances, but some fans have even started bringing their own cans to the shows.
In recent months, Dirtfoot has added another dimension to their stage show. Dressed in wrestler's masks, white kitty head wraps and cow costumes, the band proves their anything-goes attitude by appearance alone.
When asked about the costumes, the band laughs with no explanation, saying it is something that just happened but continues to entertain fans.
"Entertain Me" is a representation of what the band can do musically. But capturing the spirit of a live performance is something Dirtfoot invites you to see for yourself.
-story by Stephanie Netherton- - Shreveport Times


"Random Surprisingly Good Band of The Day: Dirtfoot"

By now I’ve learned not to give too much credence to first impressions. Though I’ve hung around too many hippies in my life to have high hopes for a band named “Dirtfoot,” and listened to one too many coffee shop crooners to take notice of a song titled “My Girl,” you know what they say about book and their covers.

Here’s their deal: Imagine Nick Cave on a bed of rusty nails, the cover of “Gin and Juice” often mis-attributed to Phish (it was actually the Gourds), some old-timey “Dem Bones,” Old Crow Medicine show culture-clash, and that subtle fecal stench of Mr. Bungle skronk sax craziness: Get theses elements, let them stew in an oaken barrel for a number of years and out comes Shreveport, Louisiana’s Dirtfoot.

I’m glad I got past the fat of their wordy band bio. They should have started their pitch with the Tornado that helped form the band:

Seven years ago when a tornado blew through Shreveport, Matt was standing on his porch, shortly after a tree decided to test the landlord’s homeowner’s policy. J walked up and initiated the conversation, after spotting Matt immediately following the disaster. Amidst cracked countertops and scattered shingles, conversation ensued and the two musicians became friends.

But whatever, it’s all about Dirtfoot’s music, which you can sample here (www.dirtfoot.com). - Synthesis.net - Spencer


"Dirtfoot to release its second album Saturday"

Dirtfoot to release its second album Saturday
Shreveport band hopes for great things

By Alexandyr Kent • akent@gannett.com • November 21, 2008 2:00 am

With the release of their second album, Dirtfoot could head in one of two directions.

"I personally think we're on the edge of something big," says lead vocalist Matt Hazelton.

"It's either stardom or a train wreck," counters banjoist J. Bratlie. "One or the other."

By superstition, bands don't seriously entertain bad predictions, and Hazelton laughs off Bratlie's sarcasm as something that shouldn't be printed in a newspaper. But there it is: a sharp truth that slices to the core of artistic potential.

In the future, bands either fly or flounder.

"Bone Sessions" represents Dirtfoot's bet on taking flight. The 51-minute album features the signatures that have earned the band its following.

There is Hazelton's deep, growling voice that's equal parts delighted and demented.

There are Bratlie's old-timey banjo and his tenor backup cries.

There are the band's elder statesman, Lane Bayliss, 50, keeping order on drums; the youngest blood, Daniel Breithaupt, 24, adding percussive quirk with xylophone, vibraphone, congas, bongos, or pots and pans; and Eric Gardner plucking out soulful, up-tempo standup bass lines.

And then there are Scott Gerardy's saxophone solos — their slow, smooth notes creeping behind melodies and suddenly overtaking them with accelerating, unrestrained swing.

The band members don't want to define what they are doing, other than to playfully describe it as a "dose of gypsy punk country grumble boogie" on their Web sites.

Whatever it is, Dirtfoot's music inspires a whole lot of boogie-on-down and bean-can shaking among listeners at their live shows.

"It's fun," Hazelton, 33, says again and again, and part of what makes it so is how the six-member band relies on improvisation to make familiar songs surprising and inventive.

"Out of nowhere, Scotty comes up with this incredible beast of a solo and then inspires Eric to change up his base line," Hazelton continues. "In the middle of what we think is a regular moment, it turns into a completely new animal."

That transformation, however fleeting, is what each member prizes.

"Our music is one of the most original things I've been a part of, or heard," claims Gerardy, 31.

"When we're on stage, you really get to live in the moment," believes Gardner, 29. "I almost feel like I'm a different person."

"Once it starts, it's all good," extolls Breithaupt.

Dirtfoot's music features no electric guitars. Nearly no effect pedals. No samples of prerecorded music. No distortion of what instruments traditionally sound like.

The acoustic music is free-spirited and raucous, and sounds as if it were pouring out the broken window of a roadhouse planted in a swamp.

"It's real," says Bayliss. "It's certainly not slick and the same every single time."

The way the music is finished is also very democratic. Songs originate from Hazelton — who writes the lyrics and sets them to guitar — and are then fleshed out by the band during practice sessions.

"I bring the raw meat and we cook it," Hazelton says. "I'm the only the one in the band that is not a true musician in sense of musicianship. I never took any lessons, so I don't really understand the lines I need to live in."

Instrument by instrument, layer by layer, band members add their touches to finish a song. Sometimes it takes 30 minutes. Sometimes it takes longer than a two-and-a-half hour practice session.

Hazelton acknowledges that creative visions clash sometimes, but "somehow, someway, it works. "» . It helps that they know they rules, because that's what makes the songs complete."

While Dirtfoot members feel confident they're on to something irresistible in their music, they also feel certain they are only beginning to tap their audience. Dirtfoot has spent many weekends of the past 20 months touring far away from Shreveport in towns like Austin, Fort Worth, Dallas, Little Rock, Hot Springs, Fayetteville, Memphis, Columbia, Springfield, Lawrence and Wichita.

"Whether it's 10 people out there or 4,400, they're having a great time," says Bratlie, 36. "We give people a chance to go out there and shake their booty."

The question remains, however, as to whether or not those booty-shakers will grow and part with more loot.

Dirtfoot, now six years, gallons of sweat, measly profits and hundreds of bean-can shakers into their history, feels as if they have put in the work to make it on their music alone. The band members want the public, and a record label, to buy into their passion.

"We see the response from people," Gardner says, and it's good. "To me, it's a dream of doing this for a living and not having a day job."

As Bratlie hopes, "We're ready for the machine to step in and help us move along like we need it to."
- Shreveport Times


"Dirtfoot Invited to play National Music Festival"

Dirtfoot invited to play national music festival

May 17, 2007

By Stephanie Netherton
snetherton@gannett.com

Shreveport band Dirtfoot will join other groups, including Widespread Panic and Ben Harper, at this year’s Wakarusa Music and Camping Festival June 7-10 in Lawrence, Kan.

The performance at the four-day festival will be the largest event the band has played.

“Our show should have over 1,000 people standing there watching,” lead singer Matt Hazelton said.

“This is a huge thing for us. There will be Bonnaroo scouts there so this is really our shot to get into bigger festivals and hopefully that is what’s going to happen.”

Dirtfoot will perform from 12:15 to 1:15 p.m. June 9 on the Campground Stage, one of five stages featuring live music.

Dirtfoot traveled to Tulsa to compete in a battle of the bands to earn a spot on stage at Wakarusa. Even though the band placed third in the competition, they were invited to play the festival.

“There were talent scouts there from Wakarusa and they told us, ‘We want you guys. It doesn’t matter if you won or not,’” Hazelton said.

Dirtfoot has become a regular band at local festivals like Mudbug Madness and the Red River Revel. The band will perform from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. May 26 on the Swamp Stage at Mudbug Madness in Festival Plaza.
- Shreveport Times


"Organizers call this year’s Wakarusa Fest a ‘harmonious’ event"



By Jon Niccum

June 15, 2007

Advertisement
A peace sign mowed in the grass decorates the lawn at the Wakarusa Camping & Music Festival last Friday evening.

Photo by Thad Allender

A peace sign mowed in the grass decorates the lawn at the Wakarusa Camping & Music Festival last Friday evening.

For as much effort as organizers of the Wakarusa Music & Camping Festival have put into distancing themselves from the “hippie music” label, it appears this year things turned out pretty groovy, man.

“I think we made huge strides with the traffic, lines, parking, security and the idea that we were trying to create a more harmonious environment,” says Wakarusa organizer and founder Brett Mosiman.

“We definitely felt the love again this year. It’s like we resurrected our brand. A lot of people were on the fence whether we were the good guys or the bad guys. I think the message was received on both sides.”

Festivalgoers at the four-day event at Clinton State Park were down from nearly 15,000 to 12,000 per day in comparison to 2006. (The park reduced the attendance cap from 15,000 to 13,500 this year.) But complaints were low and spirits were high during the fourth annual gathering.

Last year’s invasive law enforcement presence and surveillance tactics made many patrons second-guess attending again. Mosiman admits that obviously hurt the turnout, but it had some constructive effects as well.

“The positive part of the law enforcement last year was it sent a loud, clear message that if you’re going to come to Kansas to profit (from drug sales), stay at home. And they did. That’s good for us,” he says.

Organizers also observe how the demographics of the audience changed.

“I seemed to notice a lot more children on the scene,” says Wakarusa media coordinator Heather Lofflin. “There aren’t any figures for that, but it was just more visible — both backstage and on the concert field.”

As always, the organizers emphasize how the musical highlights balanced out any negative facets of the festival’s execution.

Lofflin cites “Jesus Christ Superstar,” Ozomatli, Grace Potter, Les Claypool and Ben Harper as festival standouts.

Mosiman says part of Wakarusa’s appeal is turning on veteran festivalgoers to new music.

“The fun part for me is some of the Campground Stage bands like Tangleweed or Dirtfoot that nobody had ever heard of. We bring them in and a few 100 people stumble into it, then write a (Web site) thread like, ‘That melted my face.’ I’ve always thought that’s what Wakarusa was about, more than headliners,” he says.

As for any potential changes next year, Mosiman considers many aspects very much up in the air.

He says, “The future is bright, but we have to evaluate elements like how we produce it and where we produce it to ensure its profitability. This is a very risky venture, and millions of dollars are spent on it. We have to prevent big losses.”

Originally published at: http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2007/jun/15/organizers_call_years_wakarusa_fest_harmonious_eve/ - Lawrence Journal World and News


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

Photos

Bio

"Here's their deal: Imagine Nick Cave on a bed of rusty nails, the cover of "Gin and Juice" often mis-attributed to Phish (it was actually the Gourds), some old-timey "Dem Bones," Old Crow Medicine show culture-clash, and that subtle fecal stench of Mr. Bungle skronk sax craziness: Get theses elements, let them stew in an oaken barrel for a number of years and out comes Shreveport, Louisiana's Dirtfoot." - Spencer, Synthesis.net

Dirtfoot has truly captured their Gypsy Punk Country Grumble Boogie sound with their 3rd Studio album, Coming Up for Air. Backed by an amazing team (Producer - Brady Blade, Engineer - Chris Bell, Mastering - Gavin Lurssen), and thanks to loyal fans and friends, this crowd funded album features artists like Rebirth Brass Band, Papa Mali and Tim Carbone.

Dirtfoot's 3rd album, Live and In Prison was recorded live at Wade Correctional Facility in front of 300 inmates and features 10 Dirftoot favorites and 2 previously unreleased tracks. Also released, a DVD featuring the entire live performance, a behind the scenes documentary showing how we put this together, our music video featuring William Sadler and more.

Winner of Vox Populi Award for Short Form Film category of the Independent Music Awards 2012.

Toured as main support with Primus May 2011
Toured as main support with Rev Horton Heat Jan-Feb 2011

Opened for The Band Perry, Primus, Meat Puppets, The Rev Horton Heat, Cracker, Southern Culture on the Skids, Cowboy Mouth, The Wood Brothers, Rebirth Brass Band, Col. Bruce Hampton, Split Lip Rayfield, Lucero and many more.

Whether performing on big stages at festivals, or playing intimate setting in pubs and the finer taverns all over the mid west & south, Dirtfoot puts on an uproarious show. The crowds come to take part in the fun and chaos, hollering to all the calls and responses, shaking their beancans, and getting down with the infectious grooves. There is only one Gypsy Punk Country Grumble Boogie band in the land - Dirtfoot.

How it began:

In April 2000, a tornado blew through Shreveport. Matt's home was a victim of the fury and J, a curious neighbor, came walking by and initiated conversation amidst cracked counter tops and scattered shingles. The two musicians quickly became friends.

It's more than a bit ironic that a powerful, hard-to-predict weather system marks the creation of Dirtfoot. Their music can be as dizzying as a twister, volatile and uproarious.

It is their lack of restraint, their raw musical impulsiveness and high energy delivery that can be so arresting to the people who have heard them play. Matt makes primal noises and stomps his feet, leading the group like a mad conductor. The members of Dirtfoot seem to follow his lead, mixing the diverse flavors and styles of each player into a new sound and feel, completely unique to this band.

Featuring instruments ranging from guitar, banjo, upright bass, pots n' pans, drums, trombone, and beancan shakers, this band has a truly engaging and eclectic sound! They are a delicious, spicy, dirty band that will make you stomp your feet, shake your ass and yell like a lunatic on a full moon night.

For more info please contact J Bratlie at 318-560-1466

Dirtfoot
P O Box 44052
Shreveport, LA 71134

or

dirtfoot@gmail.com

Band Members