Sunday, August 28, 2011
When one of my sisters won me tickets to this show, benefiting the wag for dogs thing, I immediately began to wonder what in the world a Hank Williams III show at the Factory in Franklin would be like? I began to imagine high fallootin' society types with sweaters draped around their shoulders and no socks, but when I finally got there, I was pleased to see a crowd thick with some Hank kids. It was about fifty percent punk/necks, and fifty percent Franklin types, who were at least cool enough to know that they needed to be at this show. Either way, everyone was there to party.
I arrived to my first ever Factory show a couple songs into the set, and after standing in three different lines before I got one beer, I got myself right into the thick of the crowd. Within the first half hour, they played "The Legend Of D Ray White" and some others that I recognized from the show a few weeks ago. At this point, still having no idea what to expect, I figured we were in for about an hour and a half charity set of the Damn Band's cleaner selections, but again I stood corrected. They played a solid three hours, and as the crowd got smaller and less Franklin adult-y, the band got rowdier and more smokey club-y. There was stand up bass, fiddle, banjo, steel guitar, and Hank on acoustic, a beautiful old Guild much like the old Kemp family Wanzer. They played their blended mix of country punk all night with bored blank stares while still dripping attitude and badness. The steel player especially stood out to me, looking like Johnny Knoxville with a pony tail, in a Fedora, black shades, and a Buck Rogers style shirt, and never once changing facial countenance. Just a smooth bad ass on both pedal and Dobro slides. There was also a drummer who had the old Dave Grohl Nirvana setup with the huge deep mounted tom. He held this freight train on track along with the percussive Doghouse bass player, and Sheldon's nasally wail.
For about the last half hour of the show, we got a little taste of Assjack, the Mr. Hyde portion of most of Hank's shows, in which he dons a Les Paul style Guild and plays some thrashy punk rock, thus another prediction busted. By this time, the troublemakers were moshing and raisin' hell and the bouncer was pretty busy keeping the peace among the fifty or so remaining heathens. The Franklin peace that is, it still looked like the ball pit at Chucky Cheese compared to the last show, but everyone there was having a good time, and it all went to help some dogs not have puppies or whatever. Seriously people, there's enough dogs already, spay and neuter em.