In a city like Los Angeles, home to musical stars in nearly every known genre, handing out the Best Live Band title is not easy. But the free-thinking local collective Dustbowl Revival's upbeat, old-school, All-American sonic safaris exemplify everything shows should be: hot, spontaneous, engaging and, best of all, a pleasure to hear. LA WEEKLY
"Americana swing that was so fun I went back to see them again the next day." ROLLING STONE
...evokes a Depression-era sensibility redolent of John Steinbeck, and the spirit-raising gospel of the American South. BOSTON GLOBE
The Dustbowl Revival is a Venice, California-based collective that merges old school bluegrass, gospel, pre-war blues and the hot swing of New Orleans to form a spicy roots cocktail. Known for their roaring live sets, Dustbowl bravely brings together many styles of traditional American music. Some call it string band-brass band mash up. Imagine Old Crow Medicine Show teaming up with Louis Armstrongs Hot Fives and Sevens, or Bob Dylan and The Band jamming with Benny Goodman and his orchestra in 1938. Its infectious, joyous music - a youthful take on time-worn American traditions.
Named "Best Live Band in LA" by The LA Weekly, each Dustbowl performance promises to be a white-knuckle ride through the history of American folk music that rarely stays just on the stage. Call it the new old-timey dance hall sound made fresh by some of the best soloists in the business. After placing several songs on ABC and Fox and having tunes featured in independent films like "Made In China" (winner of SXSW) winning Americana song of the year from the Independent Music Awards (Tom Waits judging), playing festivals like Outside Lands and Live Oak and opening for bands like Rebirth Brass Band, Lake Street Dive, Preservation Hall Jazz Band and Trombone Shorty, the band began barnstorming more extensively across the USA.
Founder Z. Lupetin came west from Chicago and placed a humble Craigslist ad to get the circus started. The group has grown steadily from a small string band playing up and down the west coast, into a traveling mini orchestra featuring instrumentation that often includes fiddle, mandolin, trombone, clarinet, trumpet, ukelele, drums, tuba, organ, a bass made from a canoe oar, harmonica and plenty of washboard and kazoo for good luck.
With their latest record Carry Me Home rising on the Americana charts, the band is slated for a big 2014. A European tour is in the works. They will be recording their first live album at San Francisco's Great American Music Hall and LA's famed Troubadour and have toured the Midwest and East coast.
Based out of Venice, California, the Dustbowl Revival are a large string and brass ensemble whose colorful combination of swing, bluegrass, jazz, and Americana have earned them a national following. The core group was formed in 2007 by bandleader and principal songwriter Zach Lupetin, who placed a craigslist ad searching for collaborators and instrumentalists. Known for their rowdy, energetic live shows, the group's lineup has has swelled to as large as 15 members including various horns, mandolin, banjo, accordion, clarinet, and the dueling vocals of Lupetin and co-vocalist Liz Beebe. Their first LP, 2011's Holy Ghost Station, introduced on record their versatile sound with an emphasis on old-timey rave-ups and early gospel and swing. A follow-up called Carry Me Home arrived in 2013 and followed a similar path as they continued to mix brass band music with old-time string styles and big group vocals. Their third album, 2015's With a Lampshade On took a more direct approach, capturing the band live on-stage in San Francisco and L.A. While not necessarily a proper concert album, the record also features the Dustbowl Revival live in the studio in New York and is the most honest presentation of their sound yet. ~ Timothy Monger, Rovi