Rotten Roots: The Fort Work Sound
A potentially noteworthy debut will happen on Friday, Apr. 27, at The Grotto (517 University Dr., 817-882-9331), when Rotten Roots will open for Dallas’ Southern-fried Roomsounds and Fort Worthian alt-country rockers Badcreek. The brainchild of Fort Worth singer-songwriter Tommy Ware (ex-Jasper Stone), Rotten Roots purvey a brand of tuneage that mixes the world-weariness of Woodeye (alliteration unintended) with the suggestively twangy guitar crunch of, say, The Will Callers and The Orbans. Rotten Roots got rolling about a year ago, not long after Ware invited Mike Bandy (The Me-Thinks) to jam with drummer Scott Strayer and bassist Tony Medio, who played with Bandy eons ago in The Drag-Worms, a hard-rock outfit that shared bills with The Toadies at the legendary Fort Worth venues Joe’s Garage and The Axis. Rotten Roots, Bandy said, “all fell together pretty good.” The quartet has nailed down a few originals, including the hazy, supersonic “Blue,” but will play a lot of stuff off Ware’s debut solo album. Though recorded about 10 years ago at the old Bluebonnet Circle location of Fort Worth Sound, Outta Cahoots wasn’t released until last year and then via digital channels only. The record’s pretty stellar, however, featuring contributions from some killer local musos, including drummer Jordan Richardson (Ben Harper & The Relentless7, EPIC RUINS, Son of Stan), bassist Cliff Wright (The Orbans), and guitarist Darrin Kobetich (ex-A Million Pounds). (“I told [Ware] from the start,” Bandy said, “there ain’t no way in hell that I’m gonna be able to match Kobetich’s prowess.”) Rotten Roots, if they keep plugging along, might make a fine addition to Fort Worth’s burgeoning workingman’s rock ’n’ roll scene (“The Fort Work Sound”?), sitting right alongside The Orbans, Quaker City Night Hawks, The Will Callers, Foxtrot Uniform, and Badcreek (and occasionally Woodeye). “My interest for Rotten Roots is just to write and record as much as possible,” Ware said. He also wants the band to perform regionally often and locally “often but not regularly” and “to keep a lineup together for an extended period of time and keep churning out tunes.” “Blue” can be heard on the soundtrack to the short film LTD by local filmmaker Coleman Anderson. (For more hilarious car-porn, check out Fort Worth filmmaker Eric Clapp’s short 4×4 Camaro, featuring music by The Me-Thinks.)
Don’t look now, kids, but our 10th Annual Fort Worth Weekly Music Awards are right around the corner. To get ready for the free 48-local-band festival, Sunday, Jun. 24, in the West 7th corridor, we’re doing what we always do around this time: Invite select nominees into Eagle Audio Recording on the Near South Side to lay down some tracks for a charity compilation CD. Over the past couple of years, we’ve raised nearly $5,000 from sales of the $5 CD for our two charity sponsors: SafeHaven of Tarrant County and Tarrant Area Food Bank. A lot of new blood will be pumped into the 2012 comp. If you’re not psycho or smelly and want to hang out with us and a bunch of cool local bands in the studio on one Saturday and Sunday in May, answer the following local-band-name riddles: 1.) Ominous Apparition. 2.) Fuck You, Sir! 3.) Furtive Revenant Victor. The 10th person to e-mail the correct answers to my evil alter-ego Anthony Mariani at firstname.lastname@example.org wins. (I guess I should mention that the studio will be stocked with free catered food and free kegs of Bud Light.) Good luck.
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