Alt.Country legends The Jayhawks make a rare Western Mass appearance at the Academy of Music.
It’s no exaggeration to say that most of the bands that play the Parlor Room wouldn’t exist without the Jayhawks. They, along with Wilco, Son Volt, Whiskeytown, Steve Earle, Old 97s and many other bands were at the forefront of the emergence of alt.country, whatever that is.
The twang of their music was a refreshing break from the dirge of grunge that ruled the charts in the early 90s. They weren’t the first band to sing poetic lyrics in harmony with jangly guitars but they did it better than most. Their pop sensibility and nods to familiar crowd pleasing classic rock reached people who liked “every kind of music but country.”
When Mark Olson left the band it seemed like the roots rock scare of the 90s was coming to an end. But soon after the new lineup with Gary Louris at the front released one of the most under-appreciated records of the 90s, “Sound of Lies.” There have been many twists and turns since then including the brief return of Olson.
Their most recent album Backroads and Abandoned Motels focused on songs written by Gary Louris for artists like The Dixie Chicks and Jakob Dylan.
This is the first time they have graced the stage at the Academy of Music and it couldn’t be a better venue for them.
The Mastersons open.