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- Rock and Roll, Alt Country, Folk
- Band Members
- Band Members Joe Crockett - Singing, Writing, Guitar
Jordan Burich - Guitar
Allen Cote - Lap Steel Guitar, Guitar and Many Other.
John Crockett - Bass Guitar
Travis Doar - Drums
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The Championship live at Baba Louies in De Pere, WI
November 27, 2009
As a writer and a person the thing I fear most is getting stuck in a rut even though it is sometimes unavoidable. I guess that fear is shared among the broad spectrum of artists, musicians, and writers alike, but it happens and if we are lucky enough to realize it then new adventures are bound to be around the corner as long as you are willing to change, keep an open mind, and go with the flow. In the past month I threw myself a curve ball, I took on a new challenge that will land me a little bit deeper in the local scene. Giving me more like a "From the inside out" perspective. It is almost a story in itself as to how I landed at Baba Louie's in De Pere on a Saturday night to witness an amazing show put on by a band from Milwaukee, The Championship. A few days before the show I contacted a friend that is in the music scene down in Milwaukee just to get an idea on the buzz this band has generated and he pretty much told me that The Championship are the hottest thing right now. Ok, but they’re a country band right? Well yes and no, when The Championship hit the stage and started tuning up, I thought they really didn't look country, maybe a little, with their plaid classic wrangler button up collared shirts, but other than that they looked like a bunch of guys in jeans, shirts and normal wear. No giant cowboy hats or purdy boots. They got into the first song and a few musical elements started to become real obvious. The tones of the guitars are nice and warm tube over-driven, the drums are powerful and strong, the vocals are gritty and deep with soul, completely absent of any southern accent. Quite surprised at this point, I was even more happily confused that the guitar solos and lap steel solos were on the blues side and not finger plucking clean. So I took a step back from my normal right up in-front of the stage position to kind get a different perspective, gather my thoughts and quench my thirst with a nice ice cold PBR.
The change helped me tie together this interesting quilt of sounds and comprehend why this is in any way related to country; hands down it's got to be Joe Crockett's songwriter style. His voice is honest and warm with just a little bit of rasp. He uses a limited and predictable vocal range but it works perfectly with his acoustic Taylor guitar and his dark or dirty lyrical style. Joe defiantly takes on the character of an older worn soul. The electric guitars in this band play a huge part in the sound and the fact that Jordan Burich and Allen Cote play so well together it really adds depth to the rather simple chord progressions. When the time is right it is not uncommon to see jamming and some warm toned blues flavored solos. You also see Allen sliding on the lap steel adding to Joe's progressions and Jordan's soundscapes. I was a huge fan of Travis Dour's powerful drumming; it really emphasized Joe's rhythm that would have easily gotten lost with all the other guitar work going on and having John Crockett's bass guitar locked into Travis's drums really made for a powerful tight sound. They played with an energy that matched the music they were playing and it was nice to see them connected to that energy. My favorite song of the night had to be "The Sword" they played it when I was back by the bar, it drew me right back up to the stage. The Championship played for about an hour and finished the night playing two encores to the crowd. Good thing it was at Baba Louie's because a band with this much draw would be just uncomfortable to enjoy in a small bar. So am I a fan of Country music now? Well personally I don't consider this country, but it certainly gives you that heartland and almost humble feeling. Check out their myspace page here http://www.myspace.com/thechampionshipmusic The photos were taken by my good friend and long time local music scene photographer Adam Roskom, Nice shots dude! The Championship are regulars at Baba Louie's and are sure to play there again in the near future. Also I thought I'd mention that Baba Louie's is a huge supporter of original music, local and national and they have bands there weekly.
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