There are two bands going under the name of the Spikedrivers:
1. Formed in 1992: one of the most original, innovative and exciting blues bands around, their combination of gutsy slide guitar, rock-solid bass, infectious grooves and highly distinctive vocals, creates a sound that is uniquely their own. They take you on a journey, from southern juke-joints and lazy front porches to the huge open spaces of dust bowls and railroad tracks disappearing into the distance.
Ben Tyzack – guitar, vocals, harmonica, Constance Redgrave – bass guitar, percussion and vocals, Maurice McElroy – drums and vocals.
Front man Ben Tyzack was born in London but raised in the deep south of the United States, Ben’s musical stlye relfects these experiences. His guitar playing is an intoxicating blend, from the raw delta blues of Robert Johnson to the powerful soundscapes of Jimmy Page. This combined with a soulful voice and commanding stage presence completes the picture of a very unique artist. In 1992 Ben formed the Spikedrivers, they have released seven albums including many of his original songs. He has also composed music for Channel 4’s ‘Car Wars’ and performed with Lee Sankey, Roger Askew and the Royal Shakespeare Company.
2. In 2003 a new sound sprang up in the Rust Belt; a raucous, down-
and-dirty sound, an intoxicating and gritty sound that pulled
people in droves to dance floors across the Midwest. It was the
sound of The Spikedrivers playing their unique blend of swinging,
bluesy, upbeat, country-fried rock ‘n’ roll. Front man Jesse
Henry’s unique and down-home song writing meets the electrified
ruckus and wild precision of the backing band similar to what
might have been if Woody Guthrie had led NRBQ.
In 2007 with one live album and their first studio album just
released, The Spikedrivers took their show on the road. They
played in eleven states rocking the shores of Massachusetts, the
bright lights of New York, and the fields of Illinois. The band
gained fans across the East Coast and the Midwest. Along the way
The Spikedrivers released their second live CD, “Live in New York
City” which showcased how easily The Spikedrivers can grab hold of
an audience in a packed club and turn them instantly to avid fans.
The Spikedrivers front man is Jesse Henry, who was raised
Mennonite in rural Northwest Ohio and who spent his early years
working on grain elevators and learning songs of the great
American Troubadours. He brings his electrifying stage presence
and musicianship wherever he roams. Megan Palmer, a registered
nurse by day, turns fiddle-playing super hero by night; serenading
the audience with her sultry voice and ravishing them with white-
hot fiddle leads. Steve Sweney, best known for his cosmic guitar
work with the band Ekoostik Hookah, gets to showcase a different
side of his playing. He strips down to just amp and guitar and
listeners get to relish the raw tone and intensity. John Boestler
the guitar wizard is the newest member bringing 40-plus years of
experience as well as being Sweney’s early mentor. The rhythm
section and backbone holding it all together are Nate Anders and
Steven Fox. A vibraphonist and college educator, Nate beats the
skins like a pack of hounds is on his tail all the while booming
baritone harmony. Fox brings his lightning-fast bow acrobatics and
hard-thumping sound on the upright bass to adventurous levels as
well as singing his sideburns off.
In the coming year The Spikedrivers look to continue their success
on the road spreading their infectious joy to all who will listen,
and to some who won’t. Also, they will return to the studio to
release their second studio album filled with ear turning tunes
sure to have people dancing in their homes waiting for the next
live performance. We hope to see you there.
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