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FEATURED EVENT: Jenny Don't and the Spurs
Upcoming event at Lamplight Sessions March 2
Featured events are sponsored posts paid for by the venue owners. BUT — I don’t take just any posts. I work with the venue owner to ensure it’s a show I feel comfortable highlighting and am sufficiently excited about. Email me at email@example.com if you’re interested in working with The Wausonian to promote your show. It’s still an experiment.
It’s not every day I come across a band that really perks my ears up, and even more rare I come across one that makes me want to learn a whole new guitar style.
Jenny Don’t and the Spurs is one of those bands.
I don’t listen to a lot of country music, but when I do, it’s typically when I’m in the mood for some of that old-fashioned country like Johnny Cash or Patsy Cline. (If you haven’t seen Cash’s version of Trent Reznor’s Hurt you should stop reading and put that on somewhere.)
Maybe that’s why Jenny Don’t and the Spurs hooked me. They play a brand of country that harkens back to those old-fashioned country days, with 12-bar chord patterns, lap steel overlays and string bends, and armed with Jenny’s stunning voice.
Jenny Don’t (aka Jenny Connors) also has the look - exactly what you’d expect a Patsy Cline country singer to look. So it might come as a surprise that she previously headed a punk band. (But when you know, you can sort of see it.)
Both Jenny and founding band member Kelly Halliburton had been playing in punk bands in the Portland scene and just really wanted a switch. And quite the switch indeed. They started rehearsing old country standards from Loretta Lynn, Hank Williams, Ernest Tubb and… wouldn’t you guess it… Patsy Cline.
Faced with a last-minute show invited they weren’t expecting, they quickly put together the rest of the band and have been playing ever since.
Since then, the band has toured the country and has 500 shows under their belt since 2012. Sadly, one of the band’s members passed away from cancer last year. The Spurs decided to keep on playing in honor of their bandmate, keeping the spirit alive.
Particularly impressive is Jenny Don’t’s vocals, which have a broad, powerful tone seemed perfectly built for the genre. in “Right from the Start”, she has this cool interlude where the band stops and she intones “so true” on an impossibly high note that ties the song together.
With guitarist Christopher March cranking out those cool country riffs, it’s easy to see why these guys along with psychedelic country acts such as Lamplight Sessions debut artist Daniel Donato (who, if you search country guitar technique, will populate your YouTube search if you search for country techniques) inspired me to want to learn the genre.
Jenny Don’t will be joined by the Sapsuckers, a band also worthy of going to check out.
Rest assured, I will be there at Lamplight sessions taking notes!
Jenny Don’t and the Spurs | Lamplight Sessions | 7 pm, March 2 | $30