Country Punk band, Jason and The Punknecks from Nashville, TN equals hardcore road warriors, hardcore workers, and hardcore players. My duo, Babs Martin & Outlaw Haints had the opportunity to open for this band at The Mercury Lounge in Tulsa. The Punknecks went through hell and, as Jason reminded me, high water to make the show. They traveled through the worst storms and floods in Arkansas almost being washed away by three feet of water rushing over a bridge. They saw people stranded in trees, a sheriff drug off during a rescue, and officials at a complete loss. It was a human tragedy The Punknecks could barely put into words. These were some of the most devastating scenes these true road warriors had ever seen.
The band has been on perpetual tour for almost a decade. At our show on June 1, they were trying to estimate how many shows they had played to date in 2013. As they debated the number to be somewhere around 100, it was a consensus that they had played a “shitload.”
On this leg of their tour The Punknecks were a three piece to include Jason Punkneck on vocals, guitar, mandolin, and percussion, Polly Punkneck on vocals, guitar, and percussion, and Chris Maulden AKA C.B. on lapsteel, guitar, and mandolin. Each member gives the show their all – even to the point of scrapes, cuts, and blisters. They rocked it Southern style for an hour and a half straight.
Their music is based in real Country roots music packed with downbeat punch, old style twang, and outstanding musicianship. It’s the sound and style Nashville doesn’t want you to know about (I stole that line from Jason). They played all my favorite Punkneck tunes including “Pucker Up.” I was out on the patio when the song fired up. I couldn’t get back in through the crowd, so I sang along where I stood. Everyone looked at me like I had lost my sober mind when they hit the chorus and I shouted, “… pucker up, pucker up, pucker up.” I did manage to eventually make my way through the crowd to dance a few numbers on the dance floor. Yes, The Punknecks music and show is not something to just sit and listen to, you have sing, dance, and participate in it like a revival.
It was 3:00 AM before they finished packing, changing, and doing business. Were they going to get some sleep in the green room of their travel trailer? No, these wild cats were hitting the highway heading for Wichita, KS. If you haven’t seen Jason and The Punknecks, do yourself a favor and go see them. More than likely they are playing a show near you very soon. They kick up the perfect Saturday night let your hair down kind of music. Besides that they’re good people and you’ll feel right at home next to them. You can find just about everything Punkneck you need including music, albums, and show schedule on their Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/Punknecks?fref=ts. Be sure to hit the Like button while you’re there as they are the real deal creating original “Punky Tonk.”
~ Babs Martin
Babs Martin is crossing genres and state lines with her duo Outlaw Haints. She is also the new host of Kickass Music Women Radio. Babs is currently in the studio working on a new CD. Check out how you can become her Badass Bandit at http://babsmartin.com/.