Roots music isn’t synonymous with the stripped down sounds of Pete Seeger or Woody Guthrie though those two are widely credited as the fathers of American roots music. In fact, the genre’s massive legacy includes bluegrass, jazz, gospel, country, even vaudeville. Hailing from Nashville, Buffalo Clover takes this wide-angle view of roots, fearlessly stitching together blues, rock, country, folk and gypsy music into an eclectic, theatrical tapestry.
“Midnight Circus,” inspired by a historical band of circus thieves from the Dustbowl era, is a vaudevillian romp that takes off at a mad gallop of drums and bass, spurred on by surging horns and a wheezing accordion. Singer Margo Price plays the ringleader, summoning her audience with “Another night, another show, another penny for the gambler.” “15 Reasons” shows Price can be a comely country singer, too. Aided by a steel guitar, her voice has the right amount of smoke and lilt to effectively deliver lines like, “I know you’ll be coming back to me when you get tired of being gone.” And in “20 Tons of Blues,” a stomping beat, keening guitar and tremulous organ make for a tightly-wound blues rocker with a killer sing-a-long chorus.
Ladies and gentleman, if you’re looking for a new spin on old time music, step right up and enjoy the show.