Hanksgiving at Yucca Tap Room

Undoubtedly, one of the coolest things about the Yucca Tap Room is the community of people that congregates there. Starting last summer, a core group of musicians from that community began putting together special concerts as a tribute to some of their favorite musicians. Each designated night, the group picks one classic musician, everyone learns a few of his or her songs, and then a marathon concert begins. Featured musicians have included Tom Petty, (the night was called "Petty Thieves",) The Beatles, Bob Dylan, and last night, Hank Williams. Hanksgiving.

The evening featured the "cream of the crop" of the Valley's roots musicians. Hans Olson, Shelby James, Jim Bachmann, and Hashknife Outfit were among those paying homage to the twangy singer who pioneered honky tonk. What was especially endearing was that every part of the night was old fashioned. The bands used upright bass and pedal steel, and many of those in attendance donned the fashions of yesteryear. Ten gallon hats were in abundance, as were cowboy boots, old fashioned bow ties, and large belt buckles.

DJ Dana and Johnny Volume provided house music between sets, which consisted of Hank's old albums. (Yes, the vinyl ones.) This was indeed a treat, as DJ Dana boasts one of the best libraries of vintage country records in town. Her extensive knowledge and possession of rare collectibles does not go unnoticed.

The camaraderie of the crowd mixed with the reverence for the man of the evening provided a warm, laid back, and rather endearing Sunday night. And with the vinyls, retro dress, and lack of modern musical equipment, it was a bit of a time warp as well. Here's to kickin' back a cold one and savoring the last night before the work week.

Critic's Notebook:

Better Than: A hipster Sunday night.

Personal Bias: This was the perfect way to end the week. Nostalgic, relaxing, and a smooth transition into that often jolting Monday.

Random Fact: Singers took this very seriously, and indeed perfected Hank Williams' vocal stylings.

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