Ronnie Hymes / Blog
Cut N Scratch w/music reporter Tad Dickens
When Lucky Tubb comes to town, Ronnie Hymes is his opening act. It’s a good double-bill from jump for real country fans.
It’s the second time that Tubb and his Modern Day Troubadours have been in town. Last time, Tubb’s band joined Hymes onstage for the opening set. This time, with two new Troubadours onboard, Hymes went it alone, a situation he’s used to. After his set, he told me that’s how he started out, before putting his own band, Carolina Freight, together. (That act played in late July at Fork in the City.)
But with a late call from Tubb to join the eastern leg of his latest tour, Hymes had to leave his band back in Fayetteville, N.C. He did a strong and confident job of it, as you see here with one of his originals, “Going Home,” performed Aug. 15 at Martin’s Downtown Bar & Grill.
(see full article, photo's and video here- http://blogs.roanoke.com/cutnscratch/2012/09/music-video-ronnie-ronnie-hymes-plays-going-home-at-martins-downtown-from-aug-15/ )
ELITE MAGAZINE Ronnie Hymes & Carolina Freight
Published: Thu May 31, 2012 Ronnie Hymes & Carolina Freight: The Survivers By Jaymie Baxley Like many military veterans, Buck Thrailkill has endured several grueling deployments. And, like many veterans, he's quick to identify the thing that got him through. "This instrument saved my life," he explained, patting the round body of his glossy-black banjo. "It was, sometimes, just my love of music and playing music that brought me home safe." Ronnie Hymes and Carolina Freight are a Raeford-based trio centered around singer/songwriter Ronnie Hymes. The "Freight" refers to Thrailkill and upright bass player Frank Ehlinger, an active-duty Army medical officer. Though they classify themselves as a honky-tonk act, the group's sound actually draws from a diverse stable of Southern genres and movements, most notably bluegrass, alt-country and 1950s rockabilly music. The trio have built their local reputation on a string of fiery live performances at venues such as The Black Cat Lounge on Fort Bragg Road. Before forming the band in 2011, Hymes was a solo artist. The singer's output during this period was considerably darker in tone, and his lyrics were influenced by his experiences as a factory worker. "You never see the sunlight working in the factory, especially in the winter. You go to work and it's dark. You get off and it's dark," Hymes said. According to Hymes, the material on his band's forthcoming debut release, "Songs for the Working Man," is decidedly more optimistic. He feels this tonal shift is due in part to the close friendship and musical chemistry that developed during the group's recording sessions. Ehlinger is the other half of Carolina Freight. Like Thrailkill, he has used music as a means of coping through deployments. Language barriers would often prevent him from communicating with locals in the faraway areas where he was stationed. So, the bass player became fluent in one language everyone understands. "Music transcends certain boundaries," he said. "I've found myself playing places in front of people who couldn't understand what I was saying, but they were getting into it." Music as a survival tool is a theme for the band. "When you're younger, you might do different things when you're upset, like dent walls or whatever," Ehlinger said. "You can always grab that instrument and you can play it as hard as you want and you can beat the crap out of it, but you're making something happen." http://fbelitemag.com/articles/2012/06/01/1172050
WEEKENDER NOW Listen Up...Ronnie Hymes & Carolina Freight
Published:Thu Jan 12, 2012 Ronnie Hymes & Carolina Freight By Jessica De Vault
Whenever Ronnie Hymes listens to country music on the radio, he can't help but wonder what happened to good old-fashioned honky-tonk music. Taking his cues from acts such as Waylon Jennings and Merle Haggard, the acoustic guitarist and vocalist has grounded his music in relatable, heartfelt country sounds. It's music that he and his band pride themselves on. "There's a genre for my kind of music, the kind of music that I'm putting out there," he said. "There's a movement." Hymes and his band will perform Saturday in Fayetteville to share their love of honky-tonk music. "It'll be a pretty high energy show, and a lot of fun," he said. For years, Hymes has performed as a solo act and released his first 5-song EP in 2009. A year later, he debuted a full-length project entitled "Unincorporated." Hymes' efforts caught the attention of the indie label, Rusty Knuckles. He signed on to the label and is now working on a new album. Hymes talked with the Weekender Street Edition about his love of honky-tonk and his perspective on country music in the local music scene. Weekender: You moved to Fayetteville from West Virginia at the age of 10. How did your local upbringing contribute to your music? Hymes: Me and my dad were real country. And I have four older brothers, and all four of them listened to different kinds of music. So I have a hard time separating rock and country and blues. If it's good music, I can appreciate all of it. But when I was playing in bands, in my teenage years, I was writing the same kind of songs back then that I'm writing now. And I guess with playing in Fayetteville, you get so many different sounds, it just adds to the mixing pot. It definitely helped form my style of playing. Weekender: You're a big advocate for all things honky-tonk, but what is your take on the current brand of country music these days? Hymes: That's a loaded question.(laughs).Let's take country music radio, corporate country. They have writers that come in and write songs and gear them for a certain market. Today's market is teenage girls. Country music used to be, when I was growing up, Merle Haggard, Waylon Jennings. They talked about the hard times, things that everybody can relate to, not being able to pay your bills, drinking, whatever it might be. And today's country music is just bubbly and great. We're just a three-piece band - acoustic guitar, stand up bass. But whether it be a banjo or fiddle or steel guitar, we're a back-to-basics kind of band. Weekender: What have been the challenges for your band in regards to the local music scene? Hymes: You can go to an open-mic on Monday night, and you'll see these five people playing. You'll go on a Tuesday night at a different bar, and you'll see the same five people playing. And then on Friday and Saturday nights when you're wanting to book a show, if you're not in that loop, the same five people will be playing Friday and Saturday night. Then there's another side to that. There's Fayetteville music. Basically, you got military rock 'n' roll, these teenage hard-core rock 'n' roll sounds, then you got your folk artists. There's really not a country scene in Fayetteville. There's not really a market for it, which is one of the reasons why we play out of town. Weekender: What's next for Ronnie Hymes and Carolina Freight? Hymes: We're hoping to have the record done by February. And we're looking at May for a release. I'm pretty excited about it, especially to have Rusty Knuckles pushing us. That's going to be big. There's no name for it yet, but there are several songs on the record that are dealing with home, like "Home State Line" and another song about longing for home and missing home. So it's kind of leaning that way, but we haven't really made up our minds yet. One song could change everything. http://www.weekendernow.com/Articles/2012/01/12/1148531
"UnIncorporated" on SavingCountryMusic.com's Essential Albums for 2010
"UnIncorporated" on SavingCountyMusic.com's list of Essential Albums for 2010...
...Ronnie Hymes - UnIncorporated - Homemade music for homegrown people. This is a fun album.
...also it should be noted that "Outlaw Radio Compilation vol. 1" was first on the list, which included Ronnie Hymes - "Sea of Sin".
...see the full article here----> http://www.savingcountrymusic.com/essential-albums-for-2010
"UnIncorporated" album review by TriggerMan at SavingCountryMusic.com
I really like this album, and I’m going to tell you why:
Back in the 90′s and the early ought’s, the only resort for bands that wanted to do their own recordings were these crappy Tascam and Roland 4-track machines that mixed down to cassette. If you had some serious dough, maybe you could get an 8-track that mixed down to CD, but they usually only had two audio inputs and were heroically hard to use.
90% of the homemade projects that came from that era were virtually worthless, but every once in a while you would get a true gem, not in spite of the technology, but because of it. Just like giving birth in your house with a midwife instead of a sanitized hospital, the homegrown, un-studio feeling of a well done home record can be something very special, with a REAL feel, a soul forged in a homemade spirit, something to be proud of like Dolly Parton’s Coat of Many Colors. Hank III’s Straight to Hell was recorded on one of these late-era track machines, and has that same feel that can’t be faked in a studio.
Unfortunately the mainstream availability of studio-quality recording devices has bled some of that feeling out of many recordings, but not this one. And not only does it have the homegrown feeling, you can also tell that heart and time was put into this project. It was made with patience, and you can tell it all came out like envisioned.
UnIncorporated is a fun album with great songs that is not afraid to get too deep, or at times to be refreshingly immature. The musicianship is not superlative, but it is solid, and the heart of each song is purely captured. “Hellbilly” Ronnie Hymes has a voice like “Hellbilly” Ronnie Hymes, that keeps you hanging on every verse when the words don’t, which is not very often. He really knows how to use vocal inflections for emphasis, and how to sing how he feels instead of just singing the words.
There are a lot of fun songs here, including “Gear Slamm’n Daddy” (the only song Ronnie did not write), “Dueling Kazoo,” and “That Don’t Make Me Wrong,” in which Hymes figures out how to be self-righteous and self-deprecating all at the same time to deal with everyday road rage. This album has a real ‘everyday hero’ feel to it, with songs like “My Baby” about his significant other, and the touching “Summers Gone” about the all too common visitation father, and the tough feelings of guilt and pain and love that goes into a long distance relationship with your child.
The beauty of this album is it’s roots in truth. When so many Nashville products try to sing about the common man’s common struggles, they have to do it from the outside looking in. What Ronnie is doing is getting what is inside out, to keep his sanity.
The title track “UnIncorporated” is a great song that hits on the same themes the song “Wish” by Left Arm Tan does that I reviewed a while back; that being that you should be happy being yourself, and not bend your ways to anybody (especially Nashville). However with all the good songwriting here, I swear the wittiest song here is ostensibly a commercial. “The Redneck Minute” entertains you simply by the imaginative phrase turning, even if you’ve never seen Big D’s Redneck Minute.
This album has its warts and weak songs, just like most all albums do. But since this isn’t some studio project put out by a slick label, the flaws are understandable and forgivable, if not endearing. As bawdy and bellicose as this album is at times, you can tell it was made with love, like mother’s apple pie. Homemade. True. Real. UnIncorporated.
Two guns up!
To Purchase or Preview Tracks of Unincorporated from CD Baby...click here--->http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/ronniehymes1
To see the complete article at SavingCountryMusic.com ...click here--->http://www.savingcountrymusic.com/album-review-ronnie-hymes-unincorporated
Outlaw Radio Compilation Vol. 1
Check out the Outlaw Radio Compilation Vol. 1 CD with 22 songs by different artist. You can order your copy though Outlaw Radio Chicago at http://www.savingcountrymusic.com/outlaw-radio ...just $11.00. Artist include Ronnie Hymes, Lucky Tubb, Joe Buck, 357 String Band, Bob Wayne, Those Poor Bastards, and many more...check out the review by SavingCountryMusic.com at http://www.savingcountrymusic.com/review-outlaw-radio-compilation-volume-1