Honky-Tonk Man: Tilford Sellers at the State Street Pub

Old-Style Country Singer Tilford Sellers Plays the State Street Pub on February 3rd.

Some times the name of an artist just fits their chosen genre too perfectly. Frank Zappa, there’s a name for a quirky rocker. Johnny Cash certainly had the perfect name for a country rock singer. And, finally, we have old-style honky-tonk singer Tilford Sellers who’s coming to play the State Street Pub on February 3rd. Tilford Sellers, can you not just hear that name announced in a Bakersfield concert hall? Perfect.

A Brief History

Sellers and his band the Wagon Burners hail from Columbus, Indiana, town of fantastic architecture. Sellers and the Wagon Burners kept a pretty low profile until  2011 when they recorded “What You’re Doing to Me”. Along with several tours the following year, “What You’re Doing to Me” put Sellers on the map, musically speaking. Since then, Sellers and the Wagon Burners have kept up a steady stream of tours and releases.

 His Sound

You may recall my mentioning Bakersfield in the first paragraph. That is certainly not a coincidence. Admittedly, I may have taken a few historical liberties with the mention of a concert hall, but I digress. The Bakersfield Sound, as it came to be called, dates from the mid-1950s. Originating as a reaction against the slicker orchestral country sound produced by Nashville, the Bakersfield sound incorporated techniques from rock. This included using electric guitars and a backbeat, as well as bringing in region-specific elements from western swing music. Merle Haggard and Buck Owens were prominent artists in the Bakersfield category. Honky-tonk, meanwhile, has the same geographical origin as the Bakersfield Sound, and is quite similar. Both, for example, feature a strong backbeat.

This is more or less what Tilford Sellers plays, right down to the use of a peddle steel guitar. He’s not too big on electric guitars though.

So, as always. The venue is the State Street Pub. Door’s at 9:00.

See you there!


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