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The WDVX Blue Plate Special – 6/22 – Katie Powderly / Cimarron 615

June 22, 2023 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

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Cimarron615 is a rock and roll case study in history repeating itself.

When Poco founder and sole perennial member Rusty Young died in early 2021, it effectively ended the band’s amazing 53 year run and left adrift its remaining members – 30 year veteran bassist Jack Sundrud, drummer Rick Lonow and rookie guitarist and vocalist Tom Hampton.

The surviving members found themselves facing the same dilemma that surfaced when Buffalo Springfield called it quits in 1968 – and they ended up taking the same path forward, although it didn’t become immediately apparent. In fact, they may have permanently drifted apart if not for one last loose end.

“Kirk Pasich, from Rusty’s record label – Blue Elan – had been working on a Rusty Young tribute album prior to his passing, and he’d asked us to contribute to the album after he passed,” said Hampton. “There was a videotaping of a live show in Joshua Tree that we bundled with the session date, and before we left to return to Nashville, he offered us a record deal.”

For the west coast jaunt, they’d welcomed former Poco multi-instrumentalist Michael Webb back into the fray, and called on guitarist and singer Bill Lloyd – a collaborator with Rusty in the Sky Kings and former partner in country duo Foster and Lloyd to fill out the lineup.

When they returned to Nashville, they found themselves with an album to write, rehearse and record.

Oh, and they needed a name. Enter Michael Webb, who came up with the notion of the name after weeks of throwing around ideas.

“615 is the Nashville area code, so it ties the Poco legacy to us, since we all live here…and Cimarron feels self-explanatory – we’re all connected to Rusty, then and still. The name just makes it official.”

The band is a muscular, versatile evolution of their West-Coast country-rock roots – but their debut album, Brand New Distance, owes as much to American Beauty, Damn The Torpedoes, and Music From Big Pink as it does to the Poco catalog.

Sundrud’s warm, familiar role as a vocalist and songwriter is a strong tether to the bands’ roots while contributing strong new material to the record, while both Rick Lonow and Bill Lloyd bring songwriting and instrumental chops to their freshman effort that make the band the quintuple-threat that they represent. Rick Lonow is a touring and session veteran who was responsible for co-writing Poco’s last hit, Call It Love – and brought the first single, High Lonesome Stranger, to the sessions. Bill Lloyd’s guitar work nakedly reflects his Kentucky roots alongside his long standing power-pop tendencies while Webb and Hampton offer a wide array of sonic contributions – with Webb reprising his role as Youngs’ multi-talented instrumental foil that captivated fans during his tenure with the band and Hampton easing into the role formerly occupied by their founder on lap and pedal steel, dobro, and “whatever Michael isn’t holding at any given moment,” says Hampton. The resulting record is a blissful document of five veterans of the Nashville music community becoming a band.

Katie Powderly is an award-winning songwriter, who has performed live on PBS & NPR, and has toured from New York to Colorado, Texas to Tennessee.

She has shared bills with Tony Rice, Del McCoury Band, Yonder Mountain String Band, The Steel Wheels, The Black Lillies, Lake Street Dive, Langhorne Slim, The David Mayfield Parade, and many others.

Her singing and harmonies have been likened to Gillian Welch (Isthmus, Madison, WI) and Gram Parsons (City Paper, Rochester, NY.)

She was also voted Best Country/Bluegrass Performer in her home city of Madison, Wisconsin in the Madison Area Music Awards.

According to Local Sounds Magazine in Madison, WI, “Katie Powderly released one of the best albums [of the year], but Local Sounds’ Rick Tvedt has also hailed it as one of the best recordings to ever come out of the Madison area.”

The album they’re referring to is Katie’s debut LP, Slips of the Tongue (Red-Winged Blackbird Records), which features a hell of a lineup of supporting musicians, including Josh Oliver (Watchhouse/Mandolin Orange), Bryn Davies (Tony Rice, Guy Clark, Jack White), Tom Pryor (The Black Lillies), and Jill Andrews (the everybodyfields), and was recorded at Butch Vig’s famed Smart Studios in Madison, WI, with significant help from Scott Minor (Sparklehorse.)

Katie now resides in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Maryland after a years-long sojourn across the country.

When she’s not performing with her electrified Americana band, The Unconditional Lovers, whose first album will be out in 2023, you can find her playing her songs as a solo artist or duo, or acting as a bluegrass bass sideman for such acts as The David Mayfield Parade and Woody Pines.

She recently joined hard-driving PA bluegrass band, Dead Horse Revival, on the bluegrass bass, which features former members of Mountain Ride.



June 22, 2023
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
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301 S. Gay Street
Knoxville, TN 37902 United States
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