ROCK­ERS ON PA­RADE

Pasatiempo - - TERRELL’S TUNE-UP -

A rag­tag band of Bri­tish bik­ers on hol­i­day are tear­ing through the West — from San Fran­cisco to Santa Fe — while try­ing to live some crazy rock ’n’ roll dream. The tour fea­tures the Sons of Roy­alty, a grizzled group of rock­ers whose mem­bers have backed an amaz­ing ar­ray of fa­mous acts. How can we stop this hog-rid­ing men­ace? Don’t stop ’em. Join ’em. For one thing, even though they’re bound to raise some hell, they’re also rais­ing money for char­ity. The Sons of Roy­alty will be hit­ting Sky­light (139 W. San Fran­cisco St.) in Santa Fe at 7 p.m. on Fri­day, Sept. 18, for a night of blues-rock and good times. Tick­ets are $20.

The Bri­tish bik­ers (and par­tic­i­pants who choose to travel by car) who are tak­ing part in the tour have agreed to pledge at least 1,000 pounds to the Child­Line Rocks pro­gram, which is a free, con­fi­den­tial helpline for chil­dren and teenagers in the United King­dom, part of Great Bri­tain’s Na­tional So­ci­ety for the Preven­tion of Cru­elty to Chil­dren. In Santa Fe, pro­ceeds from ticket sales will go to La Luz de Santa Fe Fam­ily Shel­ter. Ac­cord­ing to the Sons’ web­site: “This year is the fifth Great Bri­tish In­va­sion and sees the event head to the west of Amer­ica for more Har­ley-based japes in­volv­ing in­cred­i­ble rides and, quite pos­si­bly, the fir­ing of guns (legally, of course). You’ll fly into San Fran­cisco in mid-Septem­ber and from there it’s an 11-day ex­plo­ration on two wheels, tak­ing in Yosemite, Death Val­ley, the Grand Canyon, Las Ve­gas, Route 66, the San­dia Moun­tains, and New Mexico (Break­ing Bad coun­try).”

The trip has been dubbed “Stand­ing on the Cor­ner: In the Foot­steps of Bobby Troup.” If you don’t get the ref­er­ence, he’s the guy who wrote the song “(Get Your Kicks On) Route 66.”

Last year, the in­va­sion was a trip through the South, in­clud­ing stops at Sun Stu­dios in Mem­phis and ac­tor Mor­gan Free­man’s Ground Zero Blues Club in Clarks­dale, Mis­sis­sippi. Free­man him­self ap­peared at that event, and the Sons of Roy­alty web­site im­plies that he might show up this year, telling po­ten­tial trav­el­ers to bring ex­tra cash for “all the drinks you’ll want to buy Mor­gan Free­man.” I dunno.

You might not be fa­mil­iar with the names of the in­di­vid­ual Sons of Roy­alty, who have also played to­gether un­der the name the Barnes Blues Band. But they have backed sev­eral big-time stars. Gui­tarist and singer Bobby Tench, for ex­am­ple, has been a mem­ber of the Jeff Beck Group and he has recorded with the late Texas blues great Fred­die King, Van Mor­ri­son (he played lead guitar on the Wave­length al­bum), Eric Bur­don, Hum­ble Pie, reg­gae singer Ju­nior Marvin (best known for his Clash-cov­ered song “Po­lice and Thieves”), and too many oth­ers to count. But hav­ing just re­cently seen the doc­u­men­tary Be­ware of Mr. Baker, I’m most im­pressed with the fact that Tench played, un­der the name Bobby Gass, on a 1972 Ginger Baker al­bum (Stratavar­i­ous) with Nige­rian wiz­ard Fela Ran­some-Kuti.

Key­boardist Tim Hink­ley has earned a rep­u­ta­tion as an ace stu­dio mu­si­cian, ap­pear­ing on the Rolling Stones’ Some Girls al­bum, the Who’s Quadrophe­nia film sound­track, and records by R&B great Es­ther Phillips, Thin Lizzy, Hum­ble Pie, Bad Com­pany, and Alvin Lee. Hink­ley also once backed Tom Waits on a Bri­tish tele­vi­sion spe­cial.

The other Sons aren’t slouches ei­ther. The sec­ond gui­tarist/singer in the group, Papa Ge­orge, has built a cult fol­low­ing as a blues artist. He started play­ing as a teenager at a Knights­bridge res­tau­rant called the Bor­shtch ’n’ Tears. (Now that’s the blues!) And here is a lo­cal con­nec­tion: In 2004 the gui­tarist played on the sound­track of a movie called World With­out Waves, which won the Best South­west Film award at the Santa Fe Film Fes­ti­val that year. Sons bassist Pete Rees was a mem­ber of Bri­tish blues­man (and for­mer Thin Lizzy gui­tarist) Gary Moore’s band for 13 years, while drum­mer Darby Todd has backed the likes of Robert Plant, Ron­nie Wood, and found­ing An­i­mal Alan Price on stage. Check out www.son­sofroy­alty.com.

Another cool show: Sorry I didn’t give you more warn­ing on this one, but down in Al­bu­querque on Fri­day, Sept. 11, the Rev­erend Pey­ton’s Big Damn Band is play­ing, and the pride of Es­pañola, the Im­pe­rial Rooster, is open­ing. The show is at 9 p.m. at Low Spir­its (2823 Sec­ond St. NW), and tick­ets are $10.

Early this year, gui­tarist Josh Pey­ton and his band (wife Breezy Pey­ton on wash­board and vo­cals and Ben Bus­sell on drums) un­leashed their latest al­bum, So De­li­cious, on the re­con­sti­tuted Yazoo la­bel. (The orig­i­nal Yazoo, which started in the 1960s, spe­cial­ized in com­pil­ing old blues, hill­billy, and early jazz 78s.) That seems ap­pro­pri­ate for the Pey­ton crew. While the mu­si­cians are from In­di­ana, their heart is in the Mis­sis­sippi Delta, and their sound harks back to those earthy sounds that came out of that re­gion 80 years ago.

So De­li­cious con­tin­ues the ba­sic sound the Big Damn Band is known for, kick­ing off with the chunka-chunka rhythm of “Let’s Jump a Train,” which has a guitar hook sim­i­lar to that of Cree­dence Clear­wa­ter Re­vival’s “Green River.” There is some (so) de­li­cious slide guitar on “Raise a Lit­tle Hell,” while “Pot Roast and Kisses” con­tin­ues Pey­ton’s tra­di­tion of link­ing ro­mance and food. (See “Mama’s Fried Pota­toes” from their 2008 al­bum Whole Fam Dam­nily.) Strangely, the most mel­low song on the new al­bum is called “Scream at the Night.” It’s down­right pretty.

So De­li­cious is a fine al­bum, and I’m hop­ing that at the Al­bu­querque show, the Rev­erend reaches back and does what I still con­sider the group’s great­est song: “Your Cousin’s on Cops,” which, yes, is about re­al­iz­ing the bad boy be­ing busted on the TV show is a rel­a­tive.

The Sons of Roy­alty are a grizzled group of rock­ers whose mem­bers have backed an amaz­ing ar­ray of fa­mous acts.

Bobby Tench, Papa Ge­orge, and Pete Rees

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