Last Chance Jug Band

Shake That Thing

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Assembled to update the sound of the old Memphis jug bands of the 1920s and 1930s, the Last Chance Jug Band is led by David Evans, a scholar, field researcher, and director of the ethnomusicology department at the University of Memphis. This isn't an academic project in re-creating times past, though, but a real attempt to translate the sound of the old jug bands into a contemporary setting, which means, in a word, drums. So Shake That Thing rocks out with a wonderfully ragged and loose sound complete with jugs, washboards, and kazoos, all centered 'round Evans' slightly shaky (but very effective) high vocals. The end result is a Memphis street-corner party disc that is unbelievably fun. Highlights include "Last Chance Blues," the loopy "Who Pumped the Wind in My Doughnut," "Mississippi River Blues," and a solid cover of "Viola Lee Blues," here entitled "The Judge He Pleaded."

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