DBT’s Patterson Hood talks Occupy Wall Street, Turner Hall show

By - Oct 22nd, 2011 04:00 am
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Left to right: Brad Morgan, Shonna Tucker, Mike Cooley, Patterson Hood, Jay Gonzalez, John Neff. Photos by permission of the band.

Drive-By Truckers’ back-to-basics approach to country is more folk and blues than pop, and nine albums on, the band continues to evolve. This year’s release, Go-Go Boots, has once again been well-received, and the band’s latest round of non-stop touring stops at Turner Hall Ballroom on Saturday night (Oct. 22). Tennessee’s Those Darlins open.

Singer, guitarist and storyteller extraordinaire Patterson Hood answers a few of our questions before the show.

The name  “Drive-By Truckers” sounds like a country band, but then has kind of an urban gang association as well – is there a story?

Patterson Hood: Well, at the time I came up with it, all I was listening to was old country records, trucker tapes, classic soul and hip-hop, so I guess that’s where the name came from. That and a lot of alcohol.

What are some of the band’s important influences – musical or otherwise?

PH: Old time country, classic soul, hip-hop, punk rock and power pop. I love movies also. Sometimes the movies are a bigger influence on our records than other records.

Left to right: Shonna Tucker, Mike Cooley, Patterson Hood, Jay Gonzalez, John Neff, Brad Morgan

Tell me a little about “country-soul,” and why DBT uses that label to describe its music.

PH: Because it beats the shit out of being called southern rock. Rock-and-Roll is a good thing to call it also, but it seems like journalists have an aversion to that term nowadays.

How does the group’s music (or activism) relate back to Muscle Shoals (Alabama)?

PH: You have to grow up rebelling against something and I happened to grow up in a super conservative “dry” county. Prohibition didn’t end back home until 1983 or so.

The band’s press material talks about the great Southern tradition, “to take on the Man – or anyone else.” Is there a political element in the songs, and is this evolving in light of current events?

PH: We’ve always been a very political band, even though we usually address it in the form of telling a personal story as opposed to preaching about some cause, which basically is just preaching to the choir, something I don’t have the patience or inclination to do. I am all about the Occupy Wall Street movement, although I wish that some of the folks there didn’t act like stupid douchebags on national television. Acting like a douche does not help the cause. I try to only act like a douche in the privacy of my own home.

What should fans expect to hear at Turner Hall on Saturday night – selections from the new album, old favorites, or will they be surprised?

PH: I’m always surprised.

Drive-By Truckers will perform at Turner Hall Ballroom on Saturday, Oct. 22 along with Those Darlins. Doors open at 7:30, tickets $25.

Categories: Rock

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