January 2, 2010 9:19:00 PM
In the midst of heavy touring, the Golden Triangle-based band Come On Go With Us gets to play to a home crowd Wednesday, Jan. 6, with a stop at Rick''s Cafe in Starkville.
With gigs like South by Southwest and Nashville''s biweekly Billy Block radio show, the band is beginning to attract national attention. Chase McGill, Dustin Hedrick and Christopher Hurt have been making music together since their student days at Heritage Academy in Columbus.
Around the summer of 2008, McGill and Hedrick befriended Jacob Simpson, a fellow Mississippi State University student and guitarist from Ripley, and the trio began to play under the name Come On Go With Us. They recorded a self-titled debut on the Severe Records indie label in Nashville, Tenn., and held a release party in early March, 2009.
"It was our second-to-last semester and we were driving to Nashville three nights a week to record. We didn''t sleep much, grades sucked," McGill recalls. Shortly after, Hurt rejoined his high school buddies, bringing along Taylor Mills, a drummer from Mobile, Ala., whom he''d met while attending the University of Alabama. The new line-up took to the road.
"July 2 was when we finished school. By July 3 we were gone," Chase says. "No cars, no houses, just a van and musical equipment."
The guys sleep in the van, on people''s floors, wherever they can find the space.
They''ve been as far north as the Carolinas, across to Ohio, down through Texas and south to Florida, turning enough profit to keep them fed and to fund the sophomore album they plan to lay down soon.
The band members from Columbus are multi-instrumentalists. McGill trades his guitar for the banjo, Hedrick takes turns on fiddle, guitar and bass, and Hurt, the usual bassist, sometimes replaces McGill on keyboards.
"We get compared to The Band a lot. We have three different singers, keyboards and organ, a solid backbeat, a pocket drummer who keeps us held down," McGill says.
"We sound a lot more like the ''70s than the current decade. We''re about hooks and image-driven lyrics," Hurt adds.
The band will log serious miles this month with dates booked in Louisiana, Tennessee, Texas, Oklahoma, Nevada, Arizona, Colorado and New Mexico. On Feb. 3, they play The Viper Room in Los Angeles.
The road is rigorous, but, says McGill, "We wouldn''t have it any other way."