Music City Roots hosted by Jim Lauderdale feat. The Tennessee Mafia Jug Band w/The Cleverlys, Trace Bundy, Ernie Hendrickson & Sarah Potenza and the Tall BoysPop/Rock
The Tennessee Mafia Jug Band
Goodlettsville TN | Singer-Songwriter
From the pastoral hills, hollers, shopping malls and interstate highways of Goodlettsville Tennessee, home of Bill Monroe, Bashful Brother Oswald, Stringbean, Grandpa Jones, Keith Whitley and some living country music performers, comes the most entertaining “blast from the past” since Lester Moran and the Cadillac Cowboys. They’re the Tennessee Mafia Jug Band — five guys and a scrubboard, with roots like wisdom teeth.
The Tennessee Mafia Jug Band have shamelessly stolen a feature of the old Roy Acuff Show — a bit known as “Pap & the Jug Band”. There’s only so many graveyard numbers or raunchy love songs that even the most rabid country audience can sit through without some kind of relief. This frolicking fivesome brightens up the stage with rib-tickling old time tunes. Even better, they have an utter lack of self-consciousness (and some might say any sense of decorum). The Tennessee Mafia Jug Band not only know the music, they wear the costumes, tell corny jokes and even do slapstick gags that throw a cable-tv-numbed audience into hysterics. Grown women have lost control of internal organs when the Jug Band entertains … crying so bad there was tears a’ runnin’ down both legs!!
Cane Spur AR | Country
Our family comes from the remote part of the Ozark Mountains, near Cane Spur, Arkansas. We spent our days working on the family farm mostly raising our own food and growing dad’s famous pipe tobacco. I guess he grew the best pipe tobacco around. People came from as far as Big Flat to get it. We worked hard but we had fun. In the evening we played and sang. On weekends we had pickens’. There was always a big crowd around. The Cleverly Trio is our family band. It was founded by dad and his three brothers, Turk, Tink and Bunyon. The whole family at one time or another has played in the band. Since 2005 my brother Digger has taken over the band. The current members of the trio are Digger, our brothers Miles and Vernon Dean, my boy Harvey D and our cousin Otto.
Digger is the oldest boy born in 19 and 60 in Star Gap, Arkansas. Digger worked and played music with the family until 19 and 74. At the young age of 14 he got his first outside gig as the guitar tech for Leaf Garrett. He was exposed to a lot as a young boy, even more when he became the flute tech for Jethro Tull. In the 80’s he toured with “The Rickets” and recorded with such artist as Avery Noonan and produced his Gypsy Wagon album. He wrote “Dry Hunch” the top 100 hit for the group Barn Door. It zoomed up the charts all the way to #93. In the late 1990’s he moved back to the family homestead on Cleverly Mountain. He founded Stabbin’ Cabin records and signed The Cleverly Trio to a multi-album deal.
Miles was born in 19 and 64 in Canes Spur, Arkansas. It was a Tuesday. He was born blind without sight. He could hear like a bat though. As a boy he listened over dad’s pipe tobacco crop. He could hear someone slippin’ from a mile away. His first bass was a washtub. When Uncle Turk passed on he left his bass to Miles. That changed his life and at 20 he went to Berkley, a school out east. From there he went to New Orleans, Chicago and Memphis. His bass guitar has taken him from one end of the world to the next and then back to Cleverly Mountain. Being blind hasn’t slowed him down at all. He cooks, cleans, he is the road manager of the Trio and drives the bus on straight stretches. His hobbies are poetry, skeet shootin’, and sword fightin’.
Vernon Dean “VD” was born in 19 and 65 in Roastin’ Ear, Arkansas. Aside from getting into dad’s pipe tobacco he never did much on the farm. It was always music with him. He started playin’ banjo before he could even pick it up. In 19 and 81, while campin’ on the Buffalo River he ran into a hippy clan named the Rainbow family. The whole bunch was naked and sangin’. They bought a bundle of dad’s pipe tobacco. When the Rainbow family left out, VD left out with them. We didn’t hear much from him until a few years ago when he moved back to Stone County with his wife T. Fairy whom he met at a bluegrass festival out west named Burning Man and their son J. Zone.
Otto Cleverly is our Uncle Bunyon’s boy, our cousin. Born in 19 and 68 in Fifty-Six, Arkansas, he helped run his daddy’s barbeque stand Bunyan’s Meat. When Uncle Bunyon passed on he left the stand to Otto. “Otto’s Meat” was as big as his daddy’s. People came from miles around just to get a piece of Otto’s Meat. You know, you cain’t beat Otto’s meat. Like us he grew up playin’. He did give it up for a while when he moved to Alaska, got a job on a boat and caught the crabs. Now he’s back home, smokin’ meat and playin’ fiddle and mandolin with the Trio.
Harvey D Cleverly was born a twin of two in 19 and 80 in Pumpkin Center, Arkansas. He was always beatin’ on something. His cousin Digger Jr. Jr. gave him his first drum, but he played everything. When someone sat somethin’ down in front of him, a guitar, mandolin, caliape he would pick it up and be playin’ it before you knew it. He is a good boy, he is single, 150 pounds, 5’6” a speed reader and a quick licker. He bit his tongue off in a donkey basketball game but thanks to the donations we received at Cleverly Fest we were able to get his bionic tongue. This is his first year with the Trio. He is so proud to be playin’ music with his uncle and mentor, Digger Cleverly, Sr.
Born in 19 and 59 in Painters Bluff, Arkansas I am Vera Mae Paradine Cleverly. I am the oldest girl and sister to Digger, Miles and VD. And mother to Harvey D and his twin brother Harvey C. They are genital not identical, which means they don’t look alike. I met the boys’ daddy at Gunner Pool in 19 and 79. Him and his family was camped up the creek from us. For me it was love at first sight. By the end of the weekend, I told him I wanted to marry him. That’s when he told me he was getting shipped off to Vietnam next day. I never saw him again. Nine months later the boys was born and I named them after their dear father Harvey. I am the media technician for the Cleverly Trio.
The Cleverly Trio has an annual festival up on Cleverly Mountain every spring. It brings people from all over the world, some as far as Tupelo, Mississippi. The festival has gained such attention, that for me as the media technician, I have had a hard time keeping up with all the requests for the Trio to perform.
Some recent highlights have included a stop at the Lower End VFW and then onto the popular Midget Festival in Oztown West Virginia. You should see all them Midgets! They have the Dwarf Circus, an all Midget Rodeo, and Extreme Midget Wraslin. That’s where my nephew, Digger Jr.Jr., met his soul mate Tiny Tina. She's a Midget Tina Turner Impersonator. She looks just like Tina Turner ’sept she's....a midget.
Boulder CO | Instrumental
Trace Bundy must be seen, not just heard. His music is poetry in motion, using harmonics, looping, multiple capos, and his unique banter and stage presence to deliver an unforgettable live concert experience. Listening to his intricate arrangements is one thing, but seeing the fan-dubbed "Acoustic Ninja" play live confounds even the most accomplished music lovers as to how one person can do all that with just two hands and ten fingers.
Trace has independently sold over 68,000 albums on his record label, Honest Ninja Music, and regularly sells-out shows with standing ovations at venues across the USA and around the world, in 20 countries and counting. Video clips circulate virally at astonishing speed, with over 22,000,000 YouTube views to date.
Trace was named "Most Promising New Talent" of 2008 by Acoustic Guitar Magazine, as well as winning third place in the magazine's "Best Fingerstyle Guitarist" category the same year. Last summer, he performed at Colorado's Red Rocks Amphitheatre in front of a crowd of over 7,000 people, as part of The World's Largest Music Lesson. Over the past couple of years, Trace has shared the stage with Neko Case, Brandi Carlile, Judy Collins, David Knopfler (Dire Straits), Bill Nershi (String Cheese), Laurence Juber (Paul McCartney & Wings), David Wilcox, Chris Hillman (The Byrds), Stanley Jordan, and MOFRO, among others.
Chicago IL | Singer-Songwriter
Born and raised in the Midwest, Ernie Hendrickson grew up on a steady diet of Willie Nelson, Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Cat Stevens, and Jerry Garcia. These early heroes opened the gates to the deep well of American roots music which he continues to draw inspiration from. In 2007 he self-produced and released a highly acclaimed solo record, Down the Road, of which the Illinois Entertainer deemed "Groundbreaking" and pushed him straight onto the Midwest's radar as an emerging singer-songwriter. Hendrickson set the talent bar high in the studio for this album with a cast of players that included the subtle and angelic backing vocals of his sister, Kelly Hendrickson, and the legendary harmonica player, Howard Levy (Bela Fleck & The Flecktones, Paul Simon), aligned with an all-star group of Chicago musicians.
Hendrickson's new record, Walking with Angels, began with a chance meeting between Ernie and veteran producer Bo Ramsey (Greg Brown, Lucinda Williams) in the spring of '08 in Iowa City, where Ernie was opening a show for an old friend of Bo's, Kevin Gordon. Even in early conversation, the two agreed that there was a chemistry evolving that would only deepen once the sessions began. At Bo's urging, Ernie sang and played nearly all of the songs on the record with a live band which consisted of Bo, Jon Penner on bass (Junior Brown, Bo Ramsey), and Steve Hayes on drums (Greg Brown, Bo Ramsey). This call was made by Bo to try and capture the energy of a great performance and the result could not have been better. All twelve songs on the record feel as though these four guys had been playing together for years. After adding legendary Chicago pedal steel player Brian Wilkie (Alison Krauss, Pam Tillis) on several tracks, Bob Black's banjo (Bill Monroe), and taking a trip to Nashville to record keyboardist Kevin McKendree (Delbert McClinton), the record shines as a true testament to Hendrickson's ripening powers as a songwriter. Radio promotion has taken the sophomore album's success to a higher level on both AAA and Americana stations, having spent over 25 weeks in the Top 20 on Roots Music Report's Folk charts and in regular rotation at nearly 100 different stations across the country including Nashville's award-winning WSM-AM The Legend.
Sarah and the Tall Boys
Nashville TN | Country
After 9 years in Chicago, Sarah Potenza & the Tall Boys have relocated to Nashville. Our time in Chicago was amazingly gratifying and we will miss everyone who made it so incredibly special, but we are now looking forward to finding out what Nashville has to offer us. We are hard at work writing new songs, and soon we will be sharing a couple of them with you, so stay tuned. Hopefully we will be bringing you an entire new album this year.
"Part Alt-Country, part Blues, this band is hard to categorize. Simply put, they play great American music"-The Daily Herald, Washington post