Hot Tractor
Gig Seeker Pro

Hot Tractor

Band Rock Americana


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"First Annual Feel Good Festival Thrives With Local Bands"

First annual Feel Good Festival thrives with local bands
Ben Rodgers
Fourth Estate

One form of music that’s always been kind to me is the blues. At most local record stores there are sections devoted to this music, but unless you know enough about the genre, buying an album can be a pretty painstaking task.
I find it best to approach the situation with an all-out, random-artist spending spree. Just finding something that looks good, sucking it up and paying the man. For me, it couldn’t have worked any better.
On Aug. 13, a good friend of mine told me about the first annual Feel Good Music Festival in Amherst, Wis. That same feeling of purchasing something totally unknown came over me.
There I was in a foreign community with only a close group of friends, three harmonicas, two tents and a generous cooler. I had no idea what to expect, but I went prepared with the necessities important to me.
After the most laid-back camp set up of my life, complete with free parking and lots of sundresses, we decided to make our way to the main stage in hopes of discovering new sounds and different outlooks. On the way to the grounds, the Underwater Sea Creature Parade passed us.
A man with a giant paper-mache octopus on his head led the parade. He was followed by a band of musicians playing everything from tubas to shakers. All the players were adorned in the appropriate sea-creature wardrobe.
The final member of the parade was one longhaired fella pounding his hands against a large recycling container. We just laughed a bit and kept walking, with no idea of what was to come.

We arrived at the main stage, called the Sun Stage, to catch Milwaukee area favorite Stealin’ Strings. The band played wild music, complete with a great mandolin, and even decided to pay homage to Phish by playing “Silent in the Morning.”
Later this bluegrass-fused jam band broke out a Hendrix-inspired jam that made all the sundresses twirl around.
Rev. Eddie Danger is the man who came up with this idea of the three-day festival. Before a raffle, the Reverend preached about a man named Shane Herdwicke and his “mean keys” which made the Reverend’s new album great.
His band, Hot Tractor, played just before we arrived. It was a crowd favorite and because there were only about 350 people there, I was able to walk around and ask all sorts of questions. The masses loved Hot Tractor, and I was extremely distraught we missed it.
Thanks to my sneakers and a friend who works with Herdwicke, I made it backstage without being noticed. Once I found Herdwicke, I was greeted with a handshake and a great album. I asked him what kind of music Hot Tractor plays.
“We like to call it, original grass rock, which is a combination of rock, bluegrass, funk and improvisational jazz,” Herdwicke told me with an ominous smirk on his face. This was the band’s first festival and because of the combination of great artwork and both stage set-ups he only had one word on how it felt, “Perfect.”

The music and people’s moods supported that statement all night long. Fat Maw Rooney ended the night around 1 a.m., but not before tons of feverish dancing on my part and a few streakers.
The Eau Claire-based jam/funk band ended the night in the best way possible. After covering Otis Redding’s “Hard to Handle,” the band broke into an acapella song in the same fashion of the Grateful Dead and Phish. A driving bass player and a steadfast Djimbe made this group special.
The good times didn’t stop there. A majority of the fans made their way just outside the main gate where the Reverend and two of his buddies were jamming. I was captivated and decided I would try my best not to sleep that night.
My posse was tuckered out though, so they hit the hay rather hard. That left only me and my Horner Echo Harp in the key of C. After much wandering I found the right jam circle. It was players from all the bands together with guitars and hand drums. All I recall was rocking out until sometime after 4 a.m. I staggered onto the wrong campsite and woke up with next to nothing left for a voice.
The only way to close this is a quote from a good friend.
“They aren’t the most popular bands, and it’s not a whole lot of people, but it is good times with good friends,” he said.
Check out and to get some free downloads.

- Fourth Estate


The release of "Love What You Can" in the summer of 2005 marks the debut of Hot Tractor.
Please check out
If you would like a full CD to be sent to your venue please e-mail or and we will get you CD.


Feeling a bit camera shy


Molding a mix of rock and roll, bluegrass, funk and jamming, Hot Tractor is a high energy-dance oriented live performance phenomenon. With tight arrangements, intricate interplay and lyrics that leave one clinging on every word, Hot Tractor produces music for the common folk of all ages. This is spirited music that revitalizes the soul and reinvigorates the goodness in life.
Led by chief songwriter Shane Hardwicke (vocals,guitar,keys), Hot Tractor hits all the spaces in between with a sound that ranges from the modern rock feel of the Red Hot Chili Peppers to the foot stompin grooves of Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs. Lyrics that are reminiscent of a 21st century Bob Dylan meets John Hiatt meets Bob Marley. Guitar innovator Ian Hart brings passion and soul to every performance and creates one of the most unique and expressive guitar techniques ever heard. Combined with an interweaving rhythm section of drummer Corey Bowe, percussionist Craig Welch and bassist Zach Bartel, this band focuses on the end product for each song, continually listening to the intricacies of each with respect and admiration. This is without mentioning the bone chilling vocal harmonies the group provides, or some of the tastiest harmonica playing ever heard by showman extraordinaire Jason Naber.
Hot Tractor is the essence of what every music lover enjoys. Great/unique music that is a style of thier own and a diverse amount of material that can satisfy everyone.