The Gourds, an American alternative country band, formed in Austin, Texas in 1994.
Evolving, in part, from the Picket Line Coyotes and the Grackles, the Gourds original line-up consisted of Kevin Russell (vocals, guitar, mandolin), Jimmy Smith (vocals, bass, guitar), Claude Bernard (accordion, guitar, vocals), and Charlie Llewellin (drums, percussion). Llewellin was replaced by current drummer Keith Langford shortly after the second album was recorded, and multi-instrumentalist Max Johnston officially joined after being invited to play on their third album. By the following album, Johnston had also become the band's third songwriter, though Russell and Smith have continued to share the bulk of those responsibilities.
Despite a sizable amount of original material, the Gourds are probably best known for a song they did not write, and for which they initially did not receive credit. A full twelve years after its live debut, fans can still be heard calling out for the band's cover version of Snoop Dogg's "Gin and Juice", often before they have even taken the stage. This has led some to consider it an albatross, but the band continues to play the crowd pleaser, adding various impromptu covers to its mid-section as a way of expanding its appeal.
While the Gourds studio efforts have all been well received, their high-energy live performances and constant touring have earned them the reputation of a band that must be seen to be appreciated. As a result, they enjoy a dedicated fan base, that is happy to follow them from town to town, and have become a favorite among those who tape live music
* Kevin Russell - vocals, mandolin, guitar
* Claude Bernard - accordion, organ, guitar
* Jimmy Smith - vocals, guitar, percussion, bass, water bowl
* Keith Langford - drums, harmonica, washboard, toy guitar
* Max Johnston (of Uncle Tupelo
) - banjo, fiddle, guitar, vocals
Dem's Good Beeble – 1997
Stadium Blitzer – 1998
Ghosts of Hallelujah – 1999
Bolsa de Agua – 2000
Cow Fish Fowl or Pig – 2002
Blood of the Ram – 2004
Heavy Ornamentals – 2006
Noble Creatures – 2007
Haymaker! – 2009
Studio covers and live originals
Gogitchyershinebox – 1998
Shinebox – 2001
Growin' a Beard – 2003
Something's Brewin' in Shiner – 2004
Listen at Last.fm
There is just absolutely no way to categorize this music, these songs, without tearing up the English language. On any given night, in any given bar, somewhere out in Eugene or Amarillo or Jacksonville or Lincoln. In new York city, Chicago, Dallas, San Francisco, Seattle or Austin. One can sit listening to a gourds show without a clue as to where in the hell it's gonna go. They are quilters in the true sense of the word. Scraps, fragments, leftovers, images strung together in a continuous scrabble of sheets draped over old wood like charm. This is first and foremost a music of joy. From there itís anybody's guess what the friggin' hell it is.
One thing is for sure though. They know what it is. But damned if these bunch of loblolly's can tell you anything about it. They just do what they do and it comes out all gourd-like and silvery and wood-like and watery.