Checking In: Charliehorse

If I was the mayor, I’d have to issue a proclamation declaring Summer 2010 “New Local Music Summer” in Fayetteville.

Cletus Got Shot, 3 Penny Acre, The 1 oz. Jig, Candy Lee, Wade Ogle, and several others have released new material over the last few months. Tonight, another Fayetteville band is getting into the new release act.

This time, it’s country-rockers Charliehorse who are set to release their new self-titled CD Friday, Sept. 3 at George’s Majestic Lounge.

When we talked to them in 2008, we asked what success looked like for Charliehorse.

“For us, a short term success would be to get another album in the tank,” they said.

Mission accomplished.

We got in touch with the band, and they were nice enough to answer some questions for us.

FF: What have you been listening to lately?
Charliehorse: Hayes Carll, Shooter Jennings, Chris Night, and classic country. When on the road, we listen to a lot of Outlaw Country on XM Radio.

FF: First of all, you’ve had a few lineup changes since we last spoke with you. Tell us about the new guys.
CH: Isayah Warford is an amazingly talented guitar player from NWA. Everyone in the band has played with him at some point in Isayah’s Allstars. When we needed a lead guitar player it just seemed to be an obvious choice for us. He really adds a new dynamic to the band that gives us a whole different sound than before and really pushes the band musically. Chad Cearley and our drummer Dave Bright played together years ago in several different Fayetteville bands and have been friends for over 30 years. Chad had been filling in for Stacy, our previous bass player whenever there was a scheduling conflict and knew the material whenever we needed him. He has a very fluid style about his playing that ties the drums and guitars together and allows the songs to explore new space each time we play them.

FF: Let’s talk about the new CD. Where did you guys record it?
CH: At Summit Street Studios in Austin, Texas with Josh Zee of the Mother Truckers producing and Grammy-nominated engineer Cris Burns.

FF: What’s your philosophy in the studio? Should a recording be a representation of the band live, or should it be something altogether different?
CH: We think it should. This album is a good representation of the band’s live sound at that time however the band has definitely evolved with the two new members. A song also evolves over time the more it’s played.

FF: How many tracks are on the new disc?
CH: “Lucky” 13 all original songs.

FF: I’ve got to ask you what I asked the guys in The 1 oz. Jig the other day. When CDs are gone, what will bands call their album release parties? And how will they sell them at the show?
CH: It is our belief that there will always be some sort of medium, CD or other, that we can get our music to our fans. Even if it is just directing them to a website.

FF: Obviously folks can get their hands on a copy of the new disc at the show. If they miss it, though, where else can they get one?
CH: Sound Warehouse in Fayetteville, and In the near future it will also be available at other sites such as iTunes, Rhapsody, Amazon, etc. in addition to other retail stores throughout the region.

FF: You guys have been busy lately. What are some of the more memorable shows you’ve played over the last year?
CH: We opened for Cross Canadian Ragweed at the Rev Room in Little Rock as well as several shows with our good friends Big Smith and Jason Boland & the Stragglers. We also opened for Ryan Bingham here at George’s Majestic Lounge on Dickson Street.

FF: Are there any other local bands that you guys are excited about right now?
CH: The 1 oz. Jig, Fayetteville Funk Ensemble, Sarah Hughes Band, 3 Penny Acre, Shannon Wurst, Mountain of Venus, Guta, and our good friend Randy Crouch out of Tahlequah.

FF: What’s next? World tour? Fame? Fortune?
CH: We are going to continue to tour regionally including Texas and hope to spread our fan base as far as possible.

Click below to hear Just Don’t Matter, by Charliehorse