The Worthless Son-in-Laws

The Worthless Son-in-Laws

 Boone, North Carolina, USA

Indie-rock/Americana blending pastoral daydream soundtracks, truck-driving rockers, and melody-laden Southern pop songs. Recommended if you like Big Star, Son Volt, Ryan Adams, Jayhawks, Justin Townes Earle, Vic Chesnutt.


“"The songwriting [on No. 8 Wire] by Jimmy Davidson with help from guitarist Rob Brown is through the roof here both melodically and lyrically, bolstered by a band that nails the songs with pinpoint perfection, floating from shades of Son Volt and the Jayhawks to the Connells and the Grateful Dead. The vocal delivery by Jimmy Davidson is rock solid on what can only be deemed one of the most pleasantly surprising releases of the summer. This one rests near the very top of the ‘highly recommended’ list. "
—Bill Hurley, The Alternate Root

“"[No. 8 Wire] alternates between slow ballads, such as ‘New York Times,’ and punchy rockers like ‘Still Life With Cake.’ The balance between the acoustic guitars and piano and electric instruments is flawless. But the real strength of the new album is the songwriting. Stylistically, the album is reminiscent of many of the stellar country rock albums of the 1970s, especially discs such as Pure Prairie League’s Bustin’ Out....”—"--Jeff Eason, The Mountain Times

“"Beautiful pop hooks and melodies wrapped in twang, reminiscent of the Jayhawks’ best stuff....“"
—--Warren Catlett, Radio Free Americana

The Worthless Son-in-Laws are a Boone, North Carolina-based amalgamation of southern indie-rock and Americana formed in early 2004. It is only because they are friends with each other that they stuck it out long enough to figure out how to get Allmanesque roots-rock guitar to work with REM/Big-Star-style melodies and meticulous lyrics.

Jimmy Davidson and Rob Brown write songs about working on container ships, t-shirt shops, snail mail, talismans, weddings, and antique televisions. Davidson draws from his work experiences and flips through Bryan Garner’'s Dictionary of Modern American Usage for inspiration, while Brown’'s muse is his latent desire to be a truck driver. Rich Crepeau plays bass and plays gigs with stitches in his fingers. Dave Brewer plays drums and tends bar at the world famous Boone Saloon.

The Worthless Son-in-Laws' new album "No. 8 Wire" was recorded at the Fidelitorium studio with indie-rock veteran Mitch Easter.


Not That Far

Written By: Jimmy Davidson

I’ve been to the top of the mountain
Where I was duped by the youth ministers
And I attended to all of those meetings
But I was mostly there for the girls, and that turned out to be a pretty good reason.

I’ve been arrested for a misunderstanding
I’ve been busted for telling the truth
I’ve done worse that I never got caught for
I almost got away with wasting my youth trying to keep all my options open.

It’s not that far, it’s not that far
From the case to the crush.
Not that far, not that far,
From the look to the lust.

I’ve climbed the towers of the ancient cathedrals
I have walked along the Great Wall
And seen the ruins of the old Roman forum
I’ve marked how the mighty fall, and how they leave mostly rocks behind.

I’ve spent hours in the libraries
I’ve pored over the old documents
And translated the faded handwriting
But I haven’t been back there since I started feeling like the end of the line.

It’s not that far, it’s not that far
From the forge to the rust
Not that far, not that far
From the core to the cusp
It’s only one small surgery
Between the boom and the bust
Barely one slight century
From the dust to the dust
From the dust to the dust.

It's just one singular sliver,
Just one tiny taste
Of this one sweet second.
Where there’s no second place.

New York Times

Written By: Jimmy Davidson

They work hard in Lyttelton Harbour
Where container ships roll in their berths
And the diesel smoke flows from the tunnel
He supposes it could have been worse

He thought he might see seven wonders
But mostly he saw seven seas
And the bottom of the bunk above him
And maps marked with depths and degrees

In the evening, he leaned on the railing
And watched the world move beneath him unchanged

He made friends with Russians in Sydney
He danced with Brazilians in Rome
He fell in love once in Dublin for most of a week
When anywhere was more or less home

He scrawled on the pages of sketchbooks
Where he graphed out his Grand Unified
But one warm night out on the Pacific expanse
He dumped them all over the side

He lived such that nobody noticed too much
Kept to his place in the line
But one day he sent off a letter
That got published in the New York Times

The New York Times...

All Your Might

Written By: Jimmy Davidson

(For Vivian)

Put on your red stocking cap
You don’t want to get shot at
Walk the Horton-Shipley line
And stitch together that blue sky...

And sing with all your might

Conquer kings and queens and rooks
Dig down deep into your books
Know what’s right, write what you know
And make them prove what they say is so...

And learn with all your might

Help your mama make the bread
And help her plant the flowerbeds
Gather the eggs and thank the hens
Speak your mind, but love your friends
Listen to and love your friends

And love them withal
Love them with all your might

Don’t worry about heaven
Or the old prevailing tide
Don’t worry yourself with worrying
Just live your life
With all your might.


Sort of Back to Having a Life (2007)
No. 8 Wire (2013)
Songs streaming on various sites
Videos on YouTube

Set List

We can play for any length of time up to about 3 1/2 hours without repeating ourselves.


All the Same
And Now for the Good News
Baton Rouge
Hail Mary
I Heard You Got Married
Last July
Linville Creek
Lost Cause
The Luddite
The Man W(ho)
My Pocketknife Says "Life is Strange"
New Shoes
Not That Far
Not Ready Yet
On the Day of Recovery
Patchwork Valentine
Road to Ruleville
Still Life with Cake
Test Scoring and Reporting
Things You Say
Waffle Joint
Window Seat
Winner's Circle


The Bottle Let Me Down (Merle Haggard)
Bury Me Beneath the Willow Tree (trad.)
Dark as a Dungeon (Merle Travis)
Eddie Punchclock (Dave Desmelik)
El Condor Pasa (Simon & Garfunkel)
Icy Blue Heart (John Hiatt)
In the Pines (traditional)
Inn Town (Ryan Adams/Whiskeytown)
Leave the Biker (Fountains of Wayne)
Long Gone Lonesome Blues (Hank Williams)
Paper Thin (Mack Starks/Farmer Not-So-John