StaggoLee
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StaggoLee

Detroit, Michigan, United States | INDIE

Detroit, Michigan, United States | INDIE
Band Blues Punk

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For a band that's been together for less than a year and whose members range in age from 21 to 24, StaggoLee is off to an impressive start.

The guys in the band -- Sammy D (vox), Tommy Mac (drummer) and Ben Kay (guitar) -- play an old-school blend of blues and vintage rock, with some edgier metal riffs thrown in to round out the sound. "It's like amped-up vintage rock," says Sammy D. "We'll take a lot of boogie patterns or basic rock progressions and then just have at it. We just want to play fast and rock out."

That sound caught the attention of one of metro Detroit's most notable musician-producers: Tino Gross of the Howling Diablos. Gross helped produce the band's debut EP, "Dirty World," and has issued it via his Funky D Records label. StaggoLee will celebrate with a release party Friday at the New Way Bar in Ferndale.

"I was struck by how they're old souls," Gross says. "They're all in their early 20s, and they have this wisdom beyond their years. Everything was popping right from the get-go. I sort of see them as the next wave of new dirty Detroit rock."

Gross sums up the players this way: "The guitar player can really play; he's really Jack White- and Danny Muggs-influenced. The drummer is really solid. He's hard-hitting but with intelligence and soul. Sammy is just a naturally good tortured bluesman. That's their story."

And the guys in the band couldn't be more excited to be working with Gross: "It's extremely humbling," says Sammy D. "I'm starting to get a little more used to it now. It was a little bit overwhelming at first."

The two met via Facebook. "I sent him an e-mail. It was as simple as that," Sammy D says. "He was at the band headquarters in a matter of days."

Things moved quickly from there. "Once he saw us play, he said, 'We need to have you guys on the label.' "

To begin the recording process, "he took us to 54 Sound, Rustbelt, places I've only dreamed of seeing the inside of," Sammy D says, referring to a couple of metro Detroit's best-known recording studios. "We were immediately out in the forefront, dealing with people who have been doing this for a long time. We had a lot to prove."

Gross said Kid Rock collaborator Jimmie Bones played on a couple of tracks and describes the EP as "pretty stripped down."

"I didn't want their first recording to sound like a bunch of big shots got hold of it," Gross says. "I wanted it to sound like they sound and leave room for them to grow."

The band takes its name from an old blues song. "It's actually an RL Burnside tune," Sammy D says. "It's about a guy in the 1800s who shot somebody over a poker game. I thought, 'Wow, what a perfect premise for a band name.'

"RL Burnside has definitely had an impact on me," Sammy D continues. "A lot of blues guys have. I've always had a really strong attraction to Motown, soul and blues."

- Detroit Free Press


Discography

Debut EP "Dirty World" Produced by Tino Gross on Funky D Records, Detroit

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Bio

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