Showing posts with label Shooter Jennings. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Shooter Jennings. Show all posts

Jun 1, 2020

Buckle Up: Time for a chat with Leroy Virgil



By Kevin Broughton

If Hellbound Glory’s Leroy Virgil were a pop-culture figure from the 1970s, he’d be Kool-Aid Man, bursting through brick walls or backyard fences and spreading his own weird brand of merriment. In the 2000s, he’d be a different LEEroy, sowing chaos and damning the consequences. In the 2010s, he’s the famous Honey Badger, because he just doesn’t give a…care.

And it’s precisely that “ZFG” attitude that makes him immune from convention and all its strictures, allowing him – along with alter-ego and producer Shooter Jennings – to make one of the best pure country music albums in years.

Following 2017’s Pinball, Virgil already had his next record (a “concept album,” though as we’ll see it’s a loose thing with him) in mind. In fact, Bird Dog was more than halfway written when Virgil and Jennings decided on a course correction spurred by Jennings’ hearing a demo for “Neon Leon.” Bird Dog would go to the back burner. It would take several more months of waiting on the producer’s schedule to free up, but the seeds of Pure Scum were germinating.

Even so, the time window would be tight. Like, three days, tight. They did it in two.

“Leroy’s diligence and patience are the biggest reasons,” Jennings says. “He waited to cut the record. We were planning to do it at the end of 2018, but he had to wait because I had all these other records and projects that were on deadline. We ended up not doing it until April (of last year), and because he had all this material, he just sat around singing and playing it. Just being Leroy.”

The result of Virgil’s just being himself is an album at times rollicking, other times poignant but always genuine and faithful to any objective standards of country music. His vocals continue to impress.

“In my opinion, he’s one of the greatest singers and songwriters in all of country music and has been for a long time,” says Jennings. “Leroy has stayed true to country music the whole f*cking way. I love the guy; he’s one of my best friends in the whole world. And honestly, he’s like MY hero. He’s what I wish I could be as a singer and a songwriter.”

High praise from country royalty. Let’s hear from the artist himself.

Ladies and gentlemen, Leroy Jenkins.

I mean VIRGIL Leroy Virgil…


Pure Scum is a really catchy title for your new album. I guess “Corona Virus” was taken?

Haha! That’s funny. Perfect timing, huh? I gave it that title about a year and a half or two years ago. But yeah, Haha. It just came to me: pure scum, old highs, new lows, damaged goods, hellbound glory.

“Ragged But Alright” is a nice sort of manifesto to kick the record off. The protagonist describes himself, among other things, as a degenerate gambler who’s drunk every night, a scumbag and a braggart. So how’s your self-esteem these days?

Oh, I’m finding new ways of being humble every day. I actually stole that song, to make it even more scummy.

Oh, really?

Yeah, it’s from the 1920s.

You’re making this sh*t up.

No, really. It’s an old hillbilly song that’s in the public domain, so I took it and re-wrote it. It’s fine.

Who did it originally?

Everybody. Jerry Lee did it. George Jones did it. I forget the guy’s name who did it originally. Who cares who wrote the song; it’s just one of those that’s out there.


How biographical is this album, and did your mom really call you “Neon Leon?”

Uh, yeah…believe it or not, my name was gonna be “Neon Romilar.”

Neon what??

Neon Romilar. It’s a kind of cough syrup.

Okay…did Mom sober up before she signed the birth certificate?

I’m not sure. It depends on who you talk to.

Um, so the album: Autobiographical?

Oh! Yeah, without a doubt. It’s, uh…how do I put it? A reflection of my general style. Yeah. Maybe not “autobiographical,” but it is my style.

You did an interview with Rolling Stone just before Pinball was released and said about the title cut, “To me, it’s a song about life, the chaos of life.” This album’s fairly chaotic, too. Agree?

Ah, let me think about that. I don’t know, it’s a concept album, man.

What’s the concept, other than general scuzziness?

I think people just have to try to figure that out for themselves. If you listen closely to the lyrics in the songs, I think you’ll hear some similar themes pop up. You know…if you keep listening, you’ll get the themes, the concept.

Well, it all seems to fit together quite nicely.

Great! It’s all I listen to.

In the same interview, you said, “By listening to the album, people are going to have no idea how I feel — and I don’t want them to know.” How did you feel when you were writing these songs?

How did I feel? Well…how was I feeling…

Pretty damn good, actually. Pretty happy. Having a damn good time.

When we talked a couple of years ago, you mentioned that you had a steel player named Rico. You strongly implied that he was an illegal alien. Yet I recently came across a video of you, Shooter, Jon Anderson and Kelli Pickler at the Cash Cabin, having a good ole time.  One of the players – lap steel – was identified as “Rico Peterson, Hellbound Glory.” I’m glad to see he wasn’t deported. I also note that “Peterson” isn’t a name typically associated with illegal border crossings. Do you have a new Rico? That would be a coincidence.

Now I’ve got a Chuck, and he’s from America.

Yeah?

Yeah. Utah, in fact.

Is Rico not a thing anymore?

You know, Rico’s…He had a baby. He knocked some chick up and he has a baby now.

An anchor baby?

[Giggles, hard] Yeah. It was time to get off the road for a while. Haha! An anchor baby! Ol’ Rico, you know, I wish him nothing but the best. I hope he’s found himself a place to post up and do whatever he does.

Shooter produced this album. Did he put the players together again, and where did y’all record?

We recorded it in Echo Park in Hollywood, California. And it’s just Shooter’s band. And that’s it.

It’s really well put together. How much of it did y’all record live?

You know what? Almost all of it. All of the vocals are live vocals. Almost all of the instrumentation. We did all of it in two days; two short days.

How much input did Shooter have about which tracks made the album?

Shooter was there as a guide. In fact, Shooter’s the guy who kicked off the idea for the album. I sent him the song “Neon Leon,” and he said, “This is better than what we’re doing for Bird Dog [an album that originally was to follow Pinball], so let’s go with this; let’s make something out of this song.”

So I just put it together. Wrote the songs – they all had the same theme – demo’d them, sent them to Shooter, sent them to the band. And we just pretty much played what was on the demos.

I don’t want to date you or anything, but you’ve got one of the best voices in all of country music. In a perfect world, several of the cuts on Pure Scum would be radio-worthy, but you might be a little rough around the edges for the mainstream. If you could pick one or two folks to cover your stuff and get it into the mainstream, who would they be? I know you’ve mentioned Kid Rock ought to cover some of your stuff…

Yeah, you know Kid Rock and I wrote a song together called “Why Can’t They All Be College Girls.”

Of course you did…

And you know, I think somebody like Josh Abbott could do that song really well. I’ve been trying to get him to cover “Why Can’t They All Be College Girls” for a while. The whole Red Dirt scene? They could all use some hellbound influence. I’d like to do another Tanya Tucker cut; that would be cool.

I guess Billy Ray Cyrus is the biggest thing going in country music right now.

Yeah? I guess I missed that memo.

You didn’t hear about this hit song he was on with Lil Nas X? “Old Town Road?”

No. And I can never tell whether you’re yanking my chain or not.

No, I’m telling you the truth! That is Billy Ray Cyrus! He is on that song.

I’m just spitballin’. I’d be interested in some other scenes…instead of just this Reno Scumbag scene.

“Scumbag.” Maybe that could be a sub-genre of outlaw country or something.

Hell, yeah, it already is!

Is anybody in that sub-genre besides you?

Yeah! There are differing aspects. I hear the scumbag influence in a lot of the bands coming around. But the Reno thing: We’re all about scum. There’s a professional wrestling tag team named The Reno Scum, and they’ve been around for like 20 years. Look ‘em up: “Reno Scum.”

I think I’ll be looking up a lot of things when I get off the phone with you.



It’s a real thing, dude. I promise. If you’re into wrestling.

I used to be. Is there a Reno rock scene, or a Reno music scene, other than you?

I’d say I’m definitely the biggest game in town, as far as bands go.

Do you have a regular gig, or a residency anywhere?

You know, I had a residency at a place called Davidson’s Distillery, and I’m sure I’ll be back there soon. But as far as the regular Thursday night deal, I haven’t done that in a while.

You know, the pantywaists who call themselves country artists love to sing about drinking beer in their trucks. I wonder if any of them would cover “DUI or Die?”

Well, somebody might actually die if they did.

Can you think of the exposure you’d get if Luke Bryan covered one of your songs?

I think that would be awesome. You know I think “No Service” would be a song that somebody could do really well. Are you familiar with that song?

I am not.

Look it up.  It’s on Streets of Aberdeen. If somebody took that song and changed the beat up…it’s got great lyrics. Look it up: “No Service.”

So what’s the first single gonna be?

“Damned Angel.”

Good song.

You know what? That one is a f*cking great song.

Well, don’t break your arm patting yourself on the back, there, Leroy.

Ha! It’s just a good melody.


Oh, I know. It reminded me of something from the Urban Cowboy soundtrack…

Sweet!

…just a very big, full, almost “country-politan.” A really good country love song.

You know, I’m almost certain that I ripped it off from somewhere; I’m still trying to figure out who I stole it from. But it seems like it had to have already been taken. You know what I mean? Doesn’t that melody sound like it might be another song?

It does! It reminds me of something, I just can’t tell what.

Me, too.

It’ll come to you when you get sued. When you read the summons, you’ll say, “Aw, yeah. That’s the song I couldn’t place!”

Bring it on, I say. If Led Zeppelin can get away with it, Hellbound Glory can.

------

Apr 9, 2020

King of the Hill Country Reaction Gifs 3

When you listen to one Johnny Rodriguez song

When Bobby's in his room listening to Kane Brown again

Every Kevin Fowler song

♫ ♬ He isn't just one of the guys
In his pink party dress you never would guess
He benches 335 
♫ ♬

♫ ♬ Smoke smoke smoke that cigarette
Puff puff puff
And if you smoke yourself to death  ♫ ♬

Shooter Jennings just having a normal conversation

When you take Bobby to a modern country concert

When somebody says Luke Bryan is the best living country singer


Apr 8, 2020

Top 10 Worst Country Quarantine House Guests


----------

10. Garth Brooks
Just cries in the corner the whole time.

9. Kacey Musgraves
Smokes up all your weed. 

8. Gary LeVox
In this temporarily ‘nicer’ era of Farce the Music, I will leave this one alone, but you know why he’s here.

7. Martina McBride
High stakes poker games with toilet paper for money. Constantly setting up booby traps and cleaning her AK for when “shit goes down.”

6. Cody Jinks
Won’t stop reminding everyone that The Rock is a big fan. Unfortunately, Ward Davis had to come along too - it’s a package deal.

5. Justin Moore
Constantly needs help reaching stuff in the cabinet and climbing up on the toilet.

4. Mitchell Tenpenny
Your wife won’t come out of the bedroom because “his staring is getting really creepy.” Refuses to wash his hands.

3. Thomas Rhett
Brings over all his kids and their friends, negating the whole social distancing thing. Wants to have Ed Sheeran karaoke contests 24/7.

2. Sam Hunt
Expects you to keep his hair cut and styled for him. Water bill extremely high from washing all his jogger pants. Wants you to be the snap track for him when he’s writing songs. 

1. Shooter Jennings
Eats all your Funyuns. His ‘essential’ luggage is 5 crates of He-Man lunch boxes.
Eats up all the wifi bandwidth playing video games constantly. Conspiracy theories out the wazoo.

Feb 13, 2020

The 40 Year Old Virgin Country Reaction Gifs

*language warning*



When you're kinda square but you're trying to fit in at the Willie concert
(I know this is from an interview, but it was during press for the movie)

When a Kane Brown fan tries to argue

When your blind date goes off on a tangent about how Sam Hunt is the natural progression of country music

All this hatin' and these stupid memes; you need to get a life

Which pop star would you not mind going country?

Shooter Jennings:

You can make fun of me, but if you make fun of my taste in music

Dustin Lynch has had more #1 hits than Johnny Paycheck

 Mainstream country songwriting session:

Dec 20, 2019

Little Known Facts: Christmas 2019 Edition



Sitting on Charlie Daniels’ lap and telling him what 
you want for Christmas really pisses him off. 

According to Santa’s Naughty and Nice List, Jason “Rowdy” Cope 
of The Steel Woods isn’t rowdy at all.

Shooter Jennings announced a spring tour and is looking forward to hitting the 
road to unwind after another winter of making toys for good boys and girls.

Blind Item: 30-50 feral hogs stole a popular Americana band’s van 
and gear trailer in certain southeastern Texas city.

Freezing temps across the country have caused Luke Bryan’s pants to fit better, 
but he is now battling chapped lips.

Mitchell Tenpenny is the first artist in a new country sub-genre: Incel Country.

With 2019 coming to an end I decided to check in with Colt Ford and 
his resolution to no longer suck. Failing for 50 weeks and counting.

The real issue is that there isn’t a war on “The Christmas Shoes.”

Kane Brown is beter then you’re favorite country sinjer. 
~this fact guest-written by a Kane Brown fan.

Florida Georgia Line’s FGL House features a reverse toy drive where employees 
go to hospitals and orphanages in Nashville and take take toys from the children.

Thomas Rhett cheerful story blah blah good news happy blah.

Starbucks compensated Jason Isbell for not changing his twitter name to IsBELLS this year by sending him a free nonfat, vanilla, soy latte with espresso shot once a week until March. (<—This fact requires too much referential minutia for the average person to get it, but I left it in so you can make fun of Jeremy for writing it. ~Trailer)

I went to see Luke Combs the other day. He said I needed wipers and a cabin air filter.

Gary Levox had a recent trip to the dentist because he confused 
the coal in his stocking for chocolate covered cherries.

Taylor Swift researched her role for Cats by being an actual crazy cat lady.

-----
Most of these by Jeremy Harris - a few by Trailer

Oct 25, 2019

Country Singer Craft Beers

*yeah some of them are "country" singers



 Mitchell Tenpenny’s White Bruh Hard Seltzer
Not beer, but sold in the beer section.


 Old Dominion Sweaty Sour
Hints of body odor, vending machine cologne, and green apple Lifesaver.
Creeps up on you.


Shooter Jennings’ Low Life Lager
Pretty damn good, but only comes in pony bottles.


 Sturgill Simpson Altered Beast
Tastes like a different style of beer every time you take a sip.


Zac Brown’s Angry EDM Ale
“Every time I get a new swig, I gotta get a new swig.”
So bitter and poorly made, Zac’s the only one who likes it.


Dan + Shay’s
Minus
Non-Alcoholic Beer
Way too sweet and beer without alcohol isn’t beer.

Jun 4, 2019

John Rich Singing “Shut Up About Politics” is Like:


John Rich, who's more famous for being politically provocative over the last few years than writing or performing songs, has a new song out called "Shut Up About Politics." Well, that's pretty much like....

-------

Florida-Georgia Line calling out people who use auto-tune


Shooter Jennings making fun of short people

Kane Brown covering “Murder on Music Row”

Miranda Lambert coming out against violent lyrics

Dustin Lynch calling someone a sellout

Dustin Lynch having a clothing line called “Stay Country”

Chris Brown wearing a “Mean People Suck” t-shirt

Tracy Lawrence talking sh** about Chris Brown

Luke Bryan saying somebody should act their age

David Allan Coe complaining about a sub-par concert

The Bellamy Brothers being against mixing country and rap

A Beyonce fan calling someone obsessed

Jamey Johnson saying Chris Knight waits too long between album releases

Hank 3 telling someone to watch their mouth

Tim McGraw saying someone has a stupid looking hat

Mitchell Tenpenny calling Old Dominion creepy

Old Dominion calling Mitchell Tenpenny creepy

Zac Brown saying any song is embarrassing


May 23, 2019

Little Known Facts Makes Its Glorious Return



Insane Clown Posse plans on releasing their entire catalog as country albums in 2019. There will be no changes or remixing done.

Shooter Jennings recently hit the big 4-0 which is a big deal since he was only 3 feet, 11 inches earlier in the year.

Due to him neglecting it while spending so much time on the road and at the beach, Kenny Chesney’s tractor is no longer considered sexy.

Zac Brown’s new rap song has reportedly coaxed hours of valuable information out of terrorists at Guantanamo Bay.

78% of all blacked out names in the Mueller Report were Steve Earle.

Famed Bigfoot hunter Eric Tipton has decided there isn’t enough challenge in looking for the elusive creature and now devotes his time to searching for women on the country music charts.

Jordan Davis’ beard is kind of like Samson’s hair in that it is hair on the head of someone who doesn’t sing country music. 

John Rich was one of the crowd favorites at a recent Nashville songwriting expo after he was a last minute substitution for the scheduled janitor that called in sick. 

Americana is sometimes called “country music for liberals” because much like liberalism, it proclaims gender equality but is mostly run by old white dudes. 

Constantly posting on Facebook about his weight loss vitamins is why John Anderson is the black sheep of his family. 

As a child, Russell Dickerson once got his head stuck in a toilet paper roll. 

I have never heard “Old Town Road” and will remove the genitalia of the first person that changes that.

Kane Brown coming on country radio is the equivalent of the auto flushing toilet pulling the paper seat cover down the drain before you are seated.

—————


Most of these are by Jeremy Harris; a few are by Trailer.

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails