O.B. James 1 p.m., March 7
The High Rolling Loners
Sound description: Country Americana rock to kick s**t by.
RIYL: The Coyote Problem, the Truckee Brothers, Shoestring Strap, Whiskey Tango
Upcoming Local Shows
- Blurt · May 17, 2007
Inception: San Diego, 2000
Influences: Marshall Tucker, the Band, the Grateful Dead, Truckee Brothers, the Coyote Problem, Gully, Dead Rock West, Golden Hill Ramblers, Bartenders Bible, Citizen Band, Whiskey Tango, Shoestring Strap, the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Wilco, Robert Earl Keen, Steve Miller Band
Simple rocking country, similar to Robert Earl Keen, is what High Rolling Loners play. The guitar ranges from growling to twangy. There's an occasional harmonica, and the lead vocals wear a Southern drawl like a pair of boots.
The band frequently tours cross country. Singer/guitarist John Verruto says of one recent tour “We were illegally carrying this monster 16-mortar firework cube, Deep Impact, for thousands of miles." The munitions were given to the band in North Carolina. “We weren't sure what to do with it, and we were nervous when we were driving through tunnels in Baltimore and New York City with it, because there were huge signs prohibiting hazardous material. The plan was to light it off at a rest area and drive off quickly, looking in the rear view mirror and cheering while videotaping and giggling. After a week, while staying at our booking agents’ ranch outside Rolla, Missouri, we drank a case of local wine and set it off at two in the morning. The last two mortars were filled with a bunch of smaller ones, too, so there was a great finale; it whooped ass.”
Even more nerve wracking than smuggling explosives, according to Verruto, was the band’s March 22, 2007 gig in Chattanooga, Tennessee. “It was on East Martin Luther King Boulevard, in a really poor neighborhood, in a run-down ghetto, with a bunch of guys hustling for change on the sidewalk. Out in the back, you could see second-story windows with no glass and lots of fire damage, and crackheads were nervously peeking their heads out at us. After the show, while I was backing out of our spot, some crazy mofo started slamming on my driver-side window, demanding change for a hotdog. We tore the hell out of there. I hope I didn’t run over his foot.”
The High Rolling Loners received two 2006 San Diego Music Award nominations for "Best Country Band" and "Best Americana Album" for their self-titled debut EP.
According to Tom Paine of San Diego Troubadour, "The High Rolling Loners sound like the Band, Marshall Tucker, and mid-seventies Dead rolled in a Zig Zag and passed from the left, half wet, and smoking. You can almost see the hippie chicks twirling in the dust out behind the barn. Lead vocalist and guitarist John Verruto sings with such a pronounced drawl you'd swear he's faking it, but I bet he isn't. Southern rock never sounded so southern."
- High Rolling Loners