Welldiggers Banquet
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Welldiggers Banquet

Band Country Classic Rock


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"Ranch Party' revival Merle Jagger, Welldiggers Banquet and Honky Tonk Train keep California country alive in LA"

"Nothing really happened [at the Lava Lounge] for six or seven months," he explains. "Then Welldiggers Banquet showed up and packed the place.
[They became monthly regulars], eventually their audience became our audience, and the night did really well until the Lava Lounge closed."
For two years the Ranch Party's friendly vibe proved a welcome surprise for the club's walk-in crowd of newspaper writers, actors and other entertainment industry workers. During that time Merle Jagger, which also includes bassist Patrick Flores and drummer Brandon Goldstein, signed with indie label LPJ Records and started touring, causing the band to almost grow out of the Ranch Party. "But before we had a chance to admit it, the Lava Lounge closed its doors," Christian says. "It was fun. Because we always had a crowd, the 9:30 opening band wasn't required to bring a crowd to the place."
Recently Spaceland invited him to revive the Ranch Party. Christian agreed — on the condition that it include KXLU/KCSN DJ Cowboy Nick, and that the Ranch Party be kept country.
Yet many bands that have played the Ranch Party — including Merle Jagger and especially Welldiggers Banquet — rock even more than they twang. Christian, who earns his living as a session guitarist playing R&B, rock and Latin music, acknowledges that irony.
"Merle Jagger isn't 100 percent country either — intentionally," he says. "I wanted a California country-rock style band. The Ranch Party is a tribute to the original California country sound. A lot of bands [we've hosted] cross that line, especially I See Hawks in LA, the Welldiggers and Psychedelic Cowboys; they have a true California country sound, which [is] a mix of rock and what I'd call 'hippiebilly.' … A lot of these bands are trying to bring back California country.
- Pasadena Weekly


Welldiggers Banquet - LP 2007



Welldiggers Banquet is a Roots based Rock band in the Los Angeles Area. Although the band is active in the Americana scene here in LA, its unique style and solid songwriting are what help the band stand out from the rest of its peers. Drawing not only on the influences of Country and Western, the band also leans heavily on Classic Rock, Texas singer/songwriters, early 70’s British Glam Rock, and Memphis Soul.

The band started out as more of a folk singer pairing between two Texas transplants, Matt Campbell and Ben Reddell, both of whom had a strong desire to write and perform songs like their heroes. Playing local clubs as a two-piece, they performed in this manner for a while, and then cut an unreleased EP back in Austin with producer Darwin Smith (Gourds, Jim James of My Morning Jacket, Polyphonic Spree). But a desire to have a full band and find a California home for their Texas-centric sound, started to fill their minds. With the addition of California native, Travis Popichak on drums and later Dan Russell on bass, the core was formed, and the band began find its unique voice.

One of the first things you notice about Welldiggers Banquet is that they are not a” Train Beat Country” band. Deriving a more Texas Rock style pacing similar to Doug Sahm, The Band, and Head, Hands, and Feet, the sound has been described as “the Rolling Stones, if Steve Earl had founded the band.” In 2007, the band recorded and released its debut, full-length album Welldiggers Banquet. Over the past year, the band has incorporated both the amazing Charlene Huang on violin and the multi-talented Matt Margucci on accordion. Welldiggers Banquet's song “Frio” was featured this May in the A & E two-part movie, “The Andromeda Strain.” The band continues to write and perform new material in Los Angeles and beyond.