Cary Hudson of Blue Mountain fame returns to his old stomping grounds Thursday, Dec. 7, with a 9 p.m. performance at Proud Larry’s, and admission is free.
Hudson was the lead vocalist, guitarist and main songwriter for Blue Mountain, a well-loved alt-country/roots band that formed in Oxford in the early 1990s. Hudson formed the band with his then-wife Laurie Stirratt after their previous band, The Hilltops, broke up.
They released their first album, “Blue Mountain,” in 1993 and continued to put out records every couple of years through 2002 before breaking up. They reunited in 2007 and performed at Oxford’s Doubledecker Festival in 2008. They recorded one more original album, “Midnight in Mississippi,” in 2008 as well as “Omnibus,” a collection of re-recorded versions of their older songs. They split again in 2013 after playing their final show at the North Mississippi Hill Country Picnic.
“We had a great run,” Hudson told Legends magazine at the time. “Nobody’s mad at anybody else. I’m just ready to go in a different direction.”
Hudson’s songs have appeared in TV shows and movies, including the George Clooney film, “Up in the Air.” He has played for Bobby Rush, RL Burnside, Big Jack Johnson, Shannon McNally, Dayna Kurtz and many others. He was chosen as one of Gibson magazine’s Top 10 Alternative Country Guitar Players.
“If I had been on the list of Top 10 alternative guitarists or Top 10 country guitarists, I’d be a millionaire,” he joked to Legends magazine in 2013. “But being in the Top 10 alternative country guitarists means that I am still doing my trade in small clubs.”
Hudson’s sixth solo album, “Town and Country,” was released in 2014. Previous albums included “Mississippi Moon” (2012); “Seems to Me” (2010); “Bittersweet Blues” (2006); “Cool Breeze” (2004); and “The Phoenix” (2002).
On the weekend bill for Proud Larry’s will be Chinese Connection Dub Embassy (CCDE) at 9 p.m., Friday, Dec. 8, with tickets at $5 apiece, and Davis Coen & Downstream Drifters at 9 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 9, also for $5 a ticket.
CCDE consists of five musicians from Mississippi, Memphis, New York and New Orleans who put their own spin on classic reggae tunes while promoting love and unity. They were the first reggae band to play the FedEx Forum as the Memphis Grizzlies’ house band and won the 2015 Waka Winter Classic Battle of the Bands.
In 2018 CCDE hopes to release a new album, “Strength,” that will feature what their website describes as “a new all-Memphis genre of music called Buck Ragga, mixing 90s hip-hop and American dancehall.”
Davis Coen, known for a contemporary country-blues style, released his 10th full-length album, “These Things Shall Pass,” fulfilling his long-standing goal of cutting an all-spiritual record. It spans from time-tested traditional American hymns, such as “What a Friend We Have in Jesus” and “Old Rugged Cross,” to classic gospel radio cuts like “Working for Jesus” and the title track.
Coen’s music has been featured in Martin Scorsese’s PBS special, “The Blues,” and on the reality TV show, “Lizard Lick Towing.” He has been spotlighted on NPR’s “Morning Edition” and “World Café” programs as well as Dan Aykroyd’s weekly “House of Blues Radio Hour.”
Compiled by Rick Hynum, editor-in-chief of HottyToddy.com. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.