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Old Shoe Review

  • Post Author
    by Web manager
  • Post Date
    Tue Apr 12 2016

When you think of “Old Shoe,” you probably think of, well, an old shoe. However, I think of something quite different. I think of a 5-piece jam band that incorporates rock, bluegrass, jazz, and a little folk, creating nothing but an upbeat atmosphere. Based out of Chicago, the band can now be considered a “supergroup” of talented songwriters around the country, hailing from as far away as Alaska. Old Shoe's compositions paint a diverse landscape of American life.

That's what their newest album, Family, is all about. It is not merely another notch in the belt for Old Shoe, but a culmination of their growth and progress since their 2011 “Let Yourself In” album. They have claimed their “Shoe Family” and are now touring all over the country, at festivals like Summer Camp, Wakarusa, and Wisconsin's Peoples Fest come August. They even have created their own festival called Shoe Fest. It's areas like these were they have created their own family.

I had the chance to see Old Shoe at the Harmony Bar in Madison, and I noticed a couple of things that made them stand out from the ordinary “jam” band. The first was how talented each musician was. Not only were they staying together and keeping a beat, but each instrument was in its own little direction. You could follow one instrument throughout the song, then move to another, all while maintaining a solid sound.

One other thing was the bassist, Dan Huber. About halfway through the set, Dan pulls out his upright bass. Not only is this thing taller than Dan, but its oblong shape turns your attention to it entirely, and suddenly Old Shoe is a completely different band. Dan was taught the upright bass in college, so it was actually the first instrument he was trained on, and not the electric bass or guitar. Things like this make Old Shoe unique.

You can check out what Old Shoe had to say in my interview with them before their show at the Harmony Bar. The next time they will be playing in Wisconsin will be at People's Fest, led by the People's Brothers Band, headlining with Horseshoes and Hand Grenades. People's Fest will be from August 11th to the 13th. You can check out the interview here!