Alternative Americana band Hurray for the Riff Raff have been praised for their left of center take on traditional southern music. Frontwoman Alynda Lee Segarra makes music about and for the people she calls the “riff raff” of society, drawing inspiration from the oldest American folk and country music. The critically acclaimed, New Orleans-based act are playing The Basement East tonight, April 22 with local psych-folk band Promised Land Sound and folk singer Willy Grantrim. If you weren’t lucky enough to win the pair of tickets we gave away, some are still available for $15 in advance, $17 at the door. Segarra is a politically active artist, particularly in feminist and LGBTQ issues, and I’m hoping they might still have some of these badass t-shirts with the Audre Lorde quote “Women are powerful and dangerous” for sale from her recent campaign benefitting the Third Wave Fund and Radical Monarchs.
Read on to learn more about the lineup and find out why if you have any affinity for roots music Hurray for the Riff Raff should definitely be on your radar.
HURRAY FOR THE RIFF RAFF
Hurray for the Riff Raff is the stage name of Alynda Lee Segarra, a New York native of Puerto Rican descent who now calls New Orleans home. Queer, feminist, traveler, punk, Segarra makes music for the people she calls the “riff raff,” or those on the outskirts of society who are usually ignored by all forms of mainstream art and media. Whether it’s a young gay punk or an older person who loves old fashioned country, both are alienated by the music that has been labeled as popular, and both can equally embrace Segarra’s interpretation of traditional southern music.
PROMISED LAND SOUND
We’ve been on the Promised Land Sound bandwagon for awhile. The roots-rock psych-folk quartet’s members have played with nearly everyone around town — JEFF the Brotherhood, PUJOL, and Those Darlins to name a few — released a 7″ on Third Man after gaining Jack White’s attention, and came out with their sophomore record For Use and Delight last fall.
Willy Gantrim is a solo folk troubadour and recent Nashville transplant from New York City, who accompanies himself on acoustic guitar and sings all kinds of old-timey music including country, blues, folk, and ragtime. He does a lot of traveling and a lot of busking. Think Pokey LaFarge and folk-era Dylan.
Hurray for the Riff Raff, Promised Land Sound, and Willy Gantrim will perform tonight, April 22 at The Basement East. The show is 21+, begins at at 9 p.m. (doors at 8:30 p.m.), and tickets are available for $15.