The good Rev. is still around doing his Psychobilly Freakout and I had the pleasure of seeing him live at a small venue in Woodstock, NY:
In all honesty, as much as I loved seeing him, it’s just not the same. My wife and I saw him way back in 2003 or 4 in Minneapolis and it was our first show that we ever saw together as husband and wife. I remember it as a good ass-kicking high energy show reminiscent of the Cramps and other good stuff like that from the good ole days. Alas, like all of us, he’s older and slower now. He still plays like a pro and looks good on stage, but he wears a hearing aid and handed of the solo duties to his guest Big Sandy on several songs. He was also prone to to telling long stories, which I actually appreciated as an older person myself. I figure if you want to only hear the songs, buy the CD, otherwise why are you paying to see it live? However, this one guy in the audience kept shouting to “shut up and play” and was being obnoxious. He pissed me off enough to tell him to shut the fuck up and it started to escalate, but fortunately my ass-kicking wife and another woman intervened and got him to back off. Later he was dancing wildly, so he and I did high fives and bear hugs and my wife’s comment about men was “You’re all just a bunch of baboons…”
I will admit that I missed most of the opening acts and I only caught a few songs from Junior Brown, who truly is a master musician with his guit-steel guitar, but the general flavor of the night was low key and not high energy like back in the old days. The show was billed as “Horton’s Holiday Hayride with REVEREND HORTON HEAT & JUNIOR BROWN with special guests The Blasters & Big Sandy” and it definitely had a Christmas vibe with the tinsel tree and a few obligatory Christmas songs like Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer. However, despite the slower and more traditional country western style overall, the ending of the main set was quite a send off with the Jim Heath telling a brief story about having played with Lemmy and getting this advice from him: “Don’t give ’em what they want, give ’em what they NEED!” and then launching into this:
And for those of you wondering what cocktail I drink at a bar when watching a show: double Tito’s on the rocks with a lime.