Southern Culture On The Skids has been consistently recording and touring around the world since its inception in 1983, when Rick Miller was a grad student at UNC-Chapel Hill. The current lineup (Dave Hartman – drums; Mary Huff – bass and vocals; Rick Miller – guitar and vocals) has been playing together for over 30 years. The band’s musical journey has taken them from all-night NC house parties to late night network talk shows, and from performing at the base of Mt. Fuji in Japan to rockin’ out for the inmates at NC Correctional Facilities. Their music has been featured in movies and TV, and used to sell everything from diamonds to pork sausage, and their legendary live shows are a testament to the therapeutic powers of foot-stomping, butt-shaking rock and roll.
SCOTS’ DIY roots go all the way back to the days of making cassette demos in the dirt floor basement of the original band house. “It was a beat down house we found in the woods, covered in kudzu vines”, Rick recalls. “We hunkered down there and came up with the sound and ideas we’ve been refining and tweaking ever since; a blue plate special of musical genres, all mixed together to give up new flavors and combinations.”
Bootleggers Choice, released in September 2018, is the latest album from Southern Culture On The Skids. The album features 16 all-new recordings of the most requested songs from the band’s long out-of-print major label releases, Dirt Track Date (1995) and Plastic Seat Sweat (1997), plus a re-mastered edition of the original 1991 recording of “Camel Walk” from the Santo Sings EP. These 16 new recordings were tracked and mixed by Rick Miller and the original engineer/producer of Dirt Track Date and Plastic Seat Sweat, the one and only Mark Williams, at Rick’s rural NC studio (and SCOTS clubhouse) "The Kudzu Ranch". CD, Double LP and digital available for order now at the official SCOTS store.
The band’s philosophy and originality has been a big factor in their longevity and success. Now, with their own studio and label, they continue to create new music and update their extensive catalog with refreshing new recordings of their most popular songs. “The songs in this collection have held up for 20+ years,” Miller says, “and we thought they deserved a new take—you know, updated for the new millennium. We have a lot of people still discovering who we are in 2018, and I think this record will appeal to new fans and old fans alike ‘cause it rocks!”
The design and layout for Bootleggers Choice is inspired by old school letterpress typography and techniques, and is printed on raw chipboard to achieve a modern rustic effect. Julie Belcher at Pioneer House Press in Knoxville, TN created the package and she also designed a limited edition poster that is included in the first 1000 LPs.
Stomp and Stammer by JEFF CLARK — Southern Culture on the Skids, Part 1
MUSICAL MUTATIONS AND SWAMP TONES:
RICK MILLER OF SOUTHERN CULTURE ON THE SKIDS TALKS ABOUT THE SOUNDS THAT GET HIM OFF
Although I love their hokey sense of cornpone humor, and I wouldn’t alter a thing about them, sometimes it irritates me that so many writeups I read about Southern Culture on the Skids focus solely or primarily on that aspect of the band. I get it – they’re goofy and fun, they personify and lovingly exaggerate a lot of wacky Dixieland stereotypes, and they get folks onstage dancing with ’em while chomping on fried chicken. It’s like Green Acres meets “Green Onions,” and what’s not to adore about that? What sometimes gets lost amid the laffs is just what outstanding musicians they are. Intact since 1988 (following a few formative years with other lineups), this Chapel Hill-based trio of guitarist/vocalist Rick Miller, bassist/vocalist Mary Huff and stand-up drummer Dave Hartman is flat-out amazing. Without resorting to needless flash or attention-hungry showboating, Miller in particular is one of the most spectacularly gifted guitar players I’ve ever seen. He juggles a lot of styles – country, garage rock, surf, rockabilly and soul to name just a few – which is reflective of his deep love of a wide swath of music and musicians. So, when he called up on a recent afternoon from a hotel lobby in Newport, Kentucky in the midst of yet another string of live dates for SCOTS, I decided the focus our conversation on the music that’s made the most impact on him over the years, the sounds that molded him into the stellar musician he is…
Read the rest of the interview at https://stompandstammer.com/feature-stories/southern-culture-on-the-skids-part-1/
Joe Bonamassa Blog (jbonamassa.com)— Grab a box of moon pies, a six-pack of cheap cold beer and a bucket of southern fried chicken, add some Southern Cultures On The Skids Music to the mix and my friend, you have all the proper necessities for a true white trash party! How would I describe this band’s music? I’ll put it this way, let’s say Jerry Lee Lewis and Dick Dale had a love child that was raised in a trailer park, the outcome would be the band Southern Culture on the Skids...
Read the rest of the review at https://jbonamassa.com/southern-culture-on-the-skids/
The Alternate Root— Shimmy, swagger, and sass are mainstays in the songs of Southern Culture on the Skids. Collecting requests from fans for the band’s two major label release, Southern Culture on the Skids offer Bootleggers Choice, sixteen reworked versions of cuts from Dirt Track Date and Plastic Seat Sweat plus a remastered version of “Camel Walk”...
Read the rest of the review at http://www.thealternateroot.com/reviewarchives/southern-culture-on-the-skids
by Shane German - Artist Of The Day: Southern Culture On The Skids
True to their name, North Carolina's Southern Culture on the Skids offers an affectionate parody of local white-trash trailer-park culture, matching their skewed outlook with a wild, careening brand of rock & roll. SCOTS' music is a quintessentially Southern-fried amalgam of rockabilly, boogie, country, blues, swamp pop, and chitlin circuit R&B, plus a liberal dose of California surf guitar, a hint of punk attitude, and the occasional mariachi horns...The 2018 release Bootleggers Choice features 16 all-new recordings of the most requested songs from the band’s long out-of-print major label releases...
Read the rest of the review at https://grcmc.org/wyce/node/35356/artist-of-the-day-southern-culture-on-the-skids
No Depression by Michael Colby So Much Fun It Can't be Legal in 22 States - Southern Culture on the Skids - The Electric Pinecones. This album is just plain fun; listening to it makes me feel good. The title "The Electric Pinecones" comes from a side project called The Pinecones, which the band describes as "country pysch garage band." Southern Culture on the Skids formed in Chapel Hill, North Carolina in 1983 and have released over a dozen albums. Consisting of Rick Miller on guitars and vocals, Mary Huff on bass and vocals, and Dave Hartman on drums and percussion, their sound to date has been a mixture of rockabilly, alt-country, and punk, with a white trash sensibility, all served up with a good dash of humor...
Read the rest of the review at http://nodepression.com/album-review/so-much-fun-it-cant-be-legal-22-states
Blurt by Fred Mills It’s unlikely that the majority of Southern Culture On the Skids fans remember the Pinecones—or, for that matter, are even aware that, for a stretch during the late ‘80s, SCOTS had an alter-ego bearing that name. Yours truly remembers, though, and fondly so. (I have the live bootleg tapes to prove it.) Essentially, the band would perform an opening set as the Pinecones, playing acoustic-based twangy/strummy countryish stuff (sometimes with a lap steel featured prominently) along with bits of melodic folk-rock. After a break, they’d come back out in full electric gonzoid SCOTS swampabilly ‘n’ choogle, and the contrast between the two sets was not only intriguing, it helped display the depth and breadth of their influences and inspirations. The Electric Pinecones is not a revival of the Pinecones, however, but a record more generally inspired by some of the material that the alter-ego worked up back in the day. The addition of the word “electric” is the tipoff. In the words of bandleader Rick Miller, “Those old setlists became the starting point for this record.” And what a terrific record. From first single “Grey Skies,” with its jangly modal riff and ‘60s West Coast vibe, and its twangier, equally Nuggets-worthy compatriot “Dirt Road”; to the moody, tremolo-infused “Waiting on You” and a bluesy, psychedelic ballad given the perfectly-themed title of “Slowly Losing My Mind”: The Electric Pinecones does indeed find Miller, bassist Mary Huff and drummer Dave Hartman dipping into territory they don’t routinely explore on album. ...
Read the rest of the review at http://blurtonline.com/review/southern-culture-skids-electric-pinecones/
AllMusic by Mark Deming Conventional wisdom tells us that change is good, and there are plenty of bands that have been well served by shaking up their formula once in a while. Southern Culture on the Skids have been serving up their own distinct brand of deep-fried hillbilly rock since 1990, and the band has never failed to deliver on-stage and in the studio. But with 2016's The Electric Pinecones, SCOTS have stepped a few paces outside their usual creative boundaries, and with enjoyable results...
Read the rest of the review at http://www.allmusic.com/album/the-electric-pinecones-mw0002969414
Elmore Magazine by Mike Cobb For over thirty years, Southern Culture On The Skids have played an eclectic range of Americana including rockabilly, surf rock, country and r&b, with a punk edge and heaps of humor. They are known for their legendary live shows and wacky antics, including throwing fried chicken and banana puddin’ into the crowd as well as inviting audience members on stage to dance. Visually SCOTS look a bit like the hillbilly stepchild of the B-52’s with Mary’s trademark beehive hair-doo and Rick’s hick overalls. But it’s more than just great fun; they are fantastic musicians to boot...
Read the rest of the review at http://www.elmoremagazine.com/2016/10/reviews/albums/southern-culture-on-the-skids
by Sheila Walsh Everyone’s musical crush: Southern Culture on the Skids
“Growing up in North Carolina and California, I listened to a lot of different things,” recalled Miller. “Rhythm and blues, soul music, pop music, rock and roll, country, all on the same radio station. From Buck Owens to the Beatles to Aretha Franklin, nothing was out of the ordinary for Miller...
Read the rest of the review at http://shutter16.com/everyones-musical-crush-southern-culture-on-the-skids/
Creative Loafing by Anita Overcash Anyone who ever had the chance to see Southern Culture on the Skids' alter ego, The Pinecones, perform will get their memory jogged on SCOTS' new album, The Electric Pinecones. In the past, the band opened sets for themsevles under the moniker, delivering a swampy, and more '60s surf pop rock feel. That's become a source of inspiration for the group and the by-product is The Electric Pinecones, the band's fifth on their independent label, Kudzo. There's still rockabilly, folk-rock and Americana elements with narly duets between Rick Miller (guitarist/singer) and Mary Huff (bassist/singer), along with steady repetitive drumbeats and swirling, tremolo effects on guitar...
Read the rest of the review at http://clclt.com/charlotte/southern-culture-on-the-skids-the-electric-pinecones/Content?oid=3804009
Press Clippings from Spain! (PDF of press clippings from multiple Spanish music outlets including Popular1) Southern Culture On The Skids es de esas bandas que cuando publican un nuevo disco ya estamos deseando verles una vez más en vivo y que saquen otro cuanto antes. Ahora el turno de “The Electric Pinecones”, el álbum más inusual de su carrera. ¿Por qué?: Rick Miller nos lo cuenta, además de narrar unas bonitas historias sobre alguno de sus ídolos...
[via Google Translate: Southern Culture On The Skids is one of those bands that when they publish a new album we are already looking forward to seeing them live again and getting another one as soon as possible. Now the turn of "The Electric Pinecones", the most unusual album of their career. Why ?: Rick Miller tells us, as well as telling some nice stories about some of his idols...]
Fried Chicken Fun: Southern Culture on the Skids...Southern Culture On The Skids, known affectionately as SCOTS, has peppered a three-decade career with their own wild brand of rock ‘n’ roll culled from a cornbread mixture of styles and filtered through a parodied look at southern life... For 2018′s “Bootleggers Choice,” SCOTS revisited the two Geffen Records [Dirt Track Date, Plastic Seat Sweat]. Since the dissolution of the label, Miller had trouble regaining the original recordings of the now out of print albums. The songs have remained staples on the band’s tour setlist, but they’ve not had physical copies of the albums to sell to fans for some time. So, they decided to pick 15 tracks from those albums and re-record them with the original producer, Mark Williams at The Kudzu Ranch. The only track on the new album that wasn’t re-recorded was “Camel Walk.” Before appearing on “Dirt Track Date,” “Camel Walk” was released on the 1992 EP “Santo! Sings,” by Athens’ Zontar Records. Miller had been sent the original recording, so they re-mastered it and put it on “Bootleggers Choice.” “It was buried on the record,” Miller said. “It was just filler. That was the song that caught everyone’s imagination. That was the song we were known for and helped it sell a lot of records.” Read the complete interview...
Southern Culture On The Skids on NPR's World Cafe from wXPN Founded in 1983, Southern Culture On The Skids has been touting the virtues of dirt-track racing, Little Debbie pastries and kudzu for over 30 years. The North Carolina band — made up of Rick Miller, Dave Hartman and Mary Huff — plays music that amalgamates rock, funky old soul and country, presented with tongue firmly in cheek. Southern Culture On The Skids' latest album, The Electric Pinecones, is named after an acoustic spin-off project from its past, back when the band sometimes opened for itself. And the name of its label, Kudzu, comes from the creeping vine that's invaded the South. Hear the complete session...
SCOTS recorded live in-studio on Halloween, October 31, 2016 at KCSN, Northridge, Los Angeles
SCOTS at the Savannah Stopover Music Festival
Jon Chattman was at the 5th Annual Savannah Stopover Music Festival March 5-7, 2015 and captured this exclusive performance of Freak Flag for The HuffPo and A-Sides Jon Chattman. Ths was filmed at the Stopover Artists' Lounge.
Full length concert of SCOTS at Shakori Hills in beautiful, bucolic Chatham County NC.
Recorded for WUNC-TV's North Carolina channel June 2016.
Features an interview with Rick and concert footage from October 2014 at the Sellersville Theatre 1894 in Sellersville PA.