During this time, the band had a song ("Wastin' Time," penned by Kinnebrew) featured in the 2002 horror film, Cabin Fever. Late in 2005. the band—that has evolved from the often-comical hybrid "Stomp Rag Boogie" American throwback outfit to eclectic tune-focused indie rockers—decided to pack it up, leave the mountains, and permanently move to the sunny sass of Los Angeles. It was a surprising move for a band that had established themselves as a hard touring underground East Coast mainstay and one of Western North Carolina's favorites for long, raucous energetic shows and community flair in their projects like WPVM's Big Asheville Radio Hour. But it was a move the band needed to make. "I had been living in Asheville and trying to do the music thing since1997," says front man and main songwriter Scott Kinnebrew.
"We thought that we could live in a small town and travel as much as we could,hitting all the spots, but we ended up burning ourselves out. We kept going up and down the East Coast, and it really started losing its fun. We thought it would be fun to try a new bigger city." Of course it's been an adjustment, and also a pay cut. Scrappy Hamilton, which was once a six-piece (Scott Kinnebrew, Walker Young, Bill Smith, Mike Alexaneder, Isaac Stanford, and Aaron Spears) but is now stripped down to a trio also featuring Walker Young on keys and Bill Smith on drums, is no longer spending long hours in the van stopping at every college town they can find on a highway.
Now they're working a metro scene,jumping on multi-band bills trying to get their name out and into local clubs. Their old fans know, though, that they can leave a fast impression. "It's different, because now our typical show is 45 minutes," says Kinnebrew. "Los Angeles musicians rarely get paid until they start pulling more people. Still it's been exciting and fun. We knew it was going to be like going back to square one, but we have a good crowd now and it's growing.
We're adding a lot of fun, because we're pulling people that will dance and get rowdy, bringing less seriousness to the music out there." Just before they relocated the group cut one last record, the independently released "Once or Twice Every Thousand Years." It's a hard look at the band's most recent direction of a straight-ahead rock approach. Loud guitar swells behind Kinnebrew's world views blatantly put in the pessimism of the title track and the heavy political tones of "American Dream." "When Scrappy Hamilton formed the group was inspired by early jazz,and it was exciting to be able to come up with new ideas out of older song concepts," Kinnebrew says. "As we grew musically, all of my influences started coming out, and I've been able to incorporate them.To a degree it feels like it's gone back to more of a singer-songwriter thing. "Lately Walker has also been writing new tunes that are like Merle Haggard meets rock 'n' roll. It's always evolving.
If we like it,we're going to try it." The band is no longer touring incessantly, but fortunately for hometown Scrappy fans the group has decided to come back and revisit many memorable nights at a special New Year's Eve show at Stella Blue.The band promises to welcome old friends to the stage, but they will also bring to Asheville one of their new friends. Recently they've been collaborating with L.A. singer Lissie Maurus, who will fly over to perform with the group. This kind of opening up to new things has always been part of the band's creative process, and just another reason they're happy with their new home. "We're in Los Angeles because we want to really hit it in an exciting town with a lot happening," Kinnebrew says.
"It's a total leap of faith that we took a year ago, and we still haven't landed yet." In 2005. members of bands Scrappy Hamilton (Bill "Smitty" Smith,Joe Edel and Scott Kinnebrew and Walter young) and Old Pike (Adam Grace and Tim Jones) joined under the name - Truth & Salvage co. The band gained national attention in 2009, when Black Crowes frontman Chris Robinson signed the group to his Silver Arrow label and gave them the opening slot on his band's tour that year. The band released their debut album (produced by Robinson) on May 25, 2010.
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