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Pokey Lafarge & the South City Three

By

Pokey Lafarge

Pokey Lafarge

© Paul Nordmann

Description of Pokey Lafarge's Music:

Traditional folk, ragtime, Americana

Comparisons:

Considering Pokey Lafarge and the South City Three are on Jack White's Third Man Records, fans of Jack White, the White Stripes, the Raconteurs, and any of white's other projects may be interested in hearing Pokey Lafarge's unique sound. He may also be of interest to fans of Justin Townes Earle, the Felice Brothers, and possibly even the high octane bluegrass of Trampled by Turtles (although Lafarge and his band are decidedly far from bluegrass pickers). Pokey's contemporary zeal may also be of interest to fans of Gillian Welch or the Decemberists. Fans of Lafarge should check out the Two Man Gentlemen Band.

Pokey Lafarge & the South City Three Lineup:

Pokey Lafarge - vocals, guitar
Joey Glynn - upright bass, vocals
Adam Hoskins - guitar, vocals
Ryan Koenig - harmonica, washboard, snare drum, vocals

Recommended Pokey Lafarge CDs:

Riverboat Soul (Free Dirt, 2010) compare prices

Middle of Everywhere (Continental Song City, 2011) compare prices

Purchase/Download Pokey Lafarge MP3s:

"La La Blues" (from Riverboat Soul
"So Long Honeybee, Goodbye" (from Middle of Everywhere)
"Drinkin' Whiskey Tonight" (from Middle of Everywhere)

Pokey Lafarge & the South City Three Biography:

According to his official biography, Pokey Lafarge was born in 1985 and raised in the American heartland, but has been touring around the world as a musician since his teen years. More specifically, it's St. Louis, MO, which Lafarge calls home. Growing up in that mecca of Americana music styles, it's no surprise Lafarge has acquired a taste for ragtime, stringband jazz, country blues, western swing, and numerous other subgenres of American folk and roots music.

Since self-releasing his debut album Marmalade (purchase/download) in 2007, Pokey Lafarge has solidified his sound stamp, pulling from each of the aforementioned traditions to create a tone which is at once old timey and terrifically contemporary. Fans and critics alike have found some level of certain familiarity in his work, despite the fact that Lafarge and his band – the South City Three – steer clear of falling into the trap of being an old timey covers band. Where other string bands of their aesthetic may find it simple, entertaining, and provocative to be a revival band – digging deep into the annals of American folk music history to breathe new life into forgotten songs about work and life in general – Lafarge prefers to create new material which honors tradition while remaining firmly footed in the present day.

The result is music which often toys with said tradition. The first song which could be considered one of Lafarge’s great "hits," for example is an unapologetically happy blues tune from his sophomore album Riverboat Soul called "La La Blues" ("I'm so happy, got me singin' la la la"). Where other songs ("Drinkin' Whiskey Tonight," "So Long Honeybee, Goodbye") tackle themes ever-present in this style of Americana music, Lafarge and his backing trio have found a way to keep them relevant.

It's this level of artistic prowess which has scored Lafarge mainstage slots at Americana and folk music festivals around the country. Portland’s Pickathon Roots Music Festival was the first, most notable festival to jump on that bandwagon after Lafarge’s debut album appeared. In 2011, after playing a couple of dates with Jack White’s Raconteurs, Lafarge and the South City Three have been featured on NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert and are scheduled to appear at the 2011 Americana Music Association Festival and Conference in Nashville, Tenn. Fans looking to follow Pokey Lafarge and the South City Three on tour throughout 2011 and beyond can find ongoing tour dates at his website.

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