The Brooklyn Country Music Festival


The L Magazine


JugFest III
September 8, 2005

a benefit for

(click pic above to donate)

one great night. four footstompin' acts.


JugFest III
Thursday, September 8th, 2005
125 5th Ave. (at St. John’s Place)
Doors, 7:30pm

Alex Battles & Anita Cookie

Uncle Dad & the Drunken Swimmers
9:00pm Banjorama!
The Wiyos
11:00pm Bill Carney's Jug Addicts


Meet the acts:

jug addicts Bill Carney's Jug Addicts apply the twinning principal utilized by Ornette Coleman's early 60s groups  and the  Max Roach's Double Quartet to the  jug band idiom. The result is a particularly robust and raucous jug band sound free of any archival obsessiveness. Comprised of jug  band veterans culled from the Don't Look Now Jug Band, MetroPolecats, and Pork Chop, the Jug Addicts' repertoire draws from early jazz, tin pan alley, ragtime, and string band music, along with the classic jug band canon. Their cd, "Cynthia's Kitchen" was produced by so-called Sixth Stroke, JP Bowersock, the NYC rock band's guru and sensei. 

The WIYOS avoid playing the old-time songs as academic "museum pieces," instead choosing to add their own voices to the old tunes by way of unique arrangements and intense, dynamic performance energy. The old-time spirit of The WIYOS mirrors that of the vaudeville medicine shows of the 1920’s and 30’s, when black and white musical traditions mixed often and genre distinctions didn’t exist between blues and country, ragtime and gospel, or swing and hillbilly music. The WIYOS draw from all of these idioms and their music is as representative of the Blue Ridge Mountains as it is of New York City or Paris; mixing the more sophisticated sounds of Django Reinhardt, Fats Waller, the Mills Brothers and Jelly Roll Morton with the unrefined country fervor of Gary Davis, Blind Blake, Sonny Terry and Doc Watson. Promoter Gary Erwin of the Budweiser Lowcountry Blues Bash, summarized The WIYOS' music as: "Great vintage blues and spellbinding original compositions." Since The WIYOS began touring full-time in February 2003, they have been selected to perform for Carnegie Hall's Neighborhood Concert Series and were awarded first prize at the James River Blues Society Competition. Having honed their show on the streets as well as the stage, The WIYOS make music that will transport you back to an era when performers where skilled visual entertainers as well as accomplished songwriters and instrumentalists. During their short time together, they have already played a wide range of notable listening rooms, concert halls and festivals throughout the country, in the process opening shows or sharing bills with Maria Muldaur, The Asylum Street Spankers, Tab Benoit, Del McCoury, Bob Margolin, Gary Primich, Duke Robillard, Robinella & The CC Stringband, The Howard Fishman Quartet and Paul Curreri.  
"The WIYOS are way too good to open for my band EVER again."
--Wammo, frontman and founder of the Asylum Street Spankers

Banjorama! Take 3 parts Brooklyn Jugs, add one part Whisky Rebellion, mix in as many banjos as possible, including but not limited to tenor banjo, 5-string banjo, banjo ukulele, and plectrum banjo, and you've got the banjo blues orchestra that is Banjorama! While their instruments may not vary, their styles certainly do. From the tropical blues stylings of singer-picker-harpist Ernesto Gomez, to the Irish airs frequented by picker Terrence McCafferty, to the hits of the 1870s & 1970s favored by singer-picker-shaker Alex Battles, you'll always have a footstompin' goodtime listening to these happy-go-lucky cats play backed by the fine jugwork of Arturo Stile.

Uncle Dad & the Drunken Swimmers: Back at JugFest II, Uncle Dad threatened 11th hour sanctions to protest their non-inclusion on the bill for that event. The former prime minister of Argentina was brought in to negotiate an understanding, and a slot on the JugFest III was secured for them. This upstart jugband has been terrorizing Manhattan's East Village with their singing and drinking antics for the past year or so. Make sure to get to JugFest III early to hear their song about the El Camino!

And your hosts...
Anita Cookie the intoxicating lush full of San Diego sass and a fondness for cookies and martinis is the star of Wasabassco Cabaret Burlesque. Anita is a character with the curves of Marilyn Monroe, the helium pipes of Betty Boop and the wit of Mae West. She drinks like Dean Martin, is usually involved in antics reminiscent of Lucille Ball, and always ends up taking her clothes off. Watch that cookie go!!!

The Whisky Rebellion The Whisky Rebellion is Alex Battles.  The Whisky Rebellion performs original songs, by turns funny and bittersweet, in the classic country style.  Battles writes these tunes with the help of his grandfather's tenor banjo.  His major songwriting influences are Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, John Prine, Tom Waits and Willie Nelson.  The Whisky Rebellion contains anywhere from 1-7 members, depending on venue constraints and the weather.  In 2004, Battles founded and programmed the 1st Annual Brooklyn Country Music Festival to promote New York City's burgeoning country music scene. The 2nd Annual Brooklyn Country Music Fesival will take place in July of 2005.  Battles is also the founder and host of JugFest, The CasHank Hootenanny Jamboree, The Brooklyn Winter Hoedown, and several other events throughout the city.  The internet home to the large-scale events Battles promotes is www.brooklyncountrymusic.com.   In his solo act, Alex can been seen (and heard) singing,banging on guitar, scratching on a washboard, plucking a tenor banjo, blowing a harmonica, strumming a ukulele, and always sticking to his motto: "he things funny thongs." Battles lives in Brooklyn, NY. 

Brooklyn Country Music