Live Picks: 08.18.2011 – 08.24.2011

The Hooten Hallers

08.18: Happy Talk Band – d.b.a.

08.19: The Hooten Hallers + HOWL + The Howdies – Siberia

The last time John Randall and Andy Rehm made their way to New Orleans, it was late March 2011, and they hustled. Doing business as The Hooten Hallers, they found themselves headlining a Thursday night show at Siberia only to be asked by one awe-struck audience member if they’d play a party the following day – an invitation they readily accepted. Less than 48 hours later, the two-piece rocking honk-tonk act was across the street at the AllWays Lounge preparing to headline another impromptu show; what happened next is anybody’s guess, since it can only be assumed that Randall and Rehm would have killed any remaining time in New Orleans seeing and playing as many places as humanly possible.

Anyone who has had the pleasure of seeing the Hooten Hallers shouldn’t be surprised by that story, as their live show is easily one of the most outrageous and revelatory you are likely to witness in your life. With an unconventional one guitarist/standing drummer arrangement, this Colombia, MO band has perfected a drunken barroom sound that belies their impressive attention to musical nuance and melody. While Randall delivers a deep lead vocal growl and either crunches a semi-hollowbody through a blown-out tube amp or beats up on an old classical acoustic guitar, percussionist Rehm tenaciously holds it all together with steady hillbilly beats and often-astounding high-register head voice backup harmonies.

Only five months later, this road warrior tag team is returning to start the process all over again at Siberia, and – depending on how much time they’ve made for themselves for this stop – a similar whirlwind mini-tour may be in the cards. It’s highly suggested that you start here.

MP3: The Hooten Hallers: “Little Mary”

08.20: Why Are We Building Such a Big Ship – AllWays Lounge

08.22: The Appleseed Cast – One Eyed Jacks

08.24: Toadies + Bones – Tipitina’s

Check out our New Orleans Music Calendar for a full slate of constantly updated live picks