Last week I had an opportunity to see a band I knew I liked to see and a band I hadn’t seen before. Starting with the new band, I enjoyed seeing Ghost Wagon. In the spirit of full disclosure, a band member is a neighbor and so I had come specifically to see them.
Ghost Wagon released their first CD (Crooked & Dark) last year and it sounds like they are gearing up for another release in 2018. With eight band members, they easily filled the small stage of the Icehouse. There’s Chuck Nelson on vocals, guitars and harp, John Mack on guitar and vocals, AJ Swenson on vocals, Jimmy Olson on drums, Marc Dockter on keyboard, Chris Hagedorn on sax, Steve Burnett on bass, and Josh Braun on pedal steel. It’s fun to see so many different instruments on stage – especially something like a sax and pedal steel.
Ghost Wagon has a country rock feel – think Tom Petty or Traveling Wilburys. Also it’s fun to see a band that looks like they are having fun on stage and these folks look like they’re having fun. They have an energy that’s infectious. The guitar and keyboard seem to drive the action of a song like Hold My Heart. While the harmony of Swenson and Nelson rounded out the song. I am looking forward to their next CD, the new songs they played seemed even more introspective and just a little more mellow in a good way.
The night ended with Fathom Lane, the unveiled their newest video – The Queen of All Hearts. It’s strange and memorable. In fact, I think every band should open with a video to build a familiarity with at least one song before the set starts. I like their original music, although I especially appreciate how they tie in cover songs. There final song – a singalong of Knocking on Heavens Door was awesome. (Clearly this is something they do – singers joined them on stage!)