Hacienda Heights

Pining for the music of Chris Gaffney? Costa Mesa's eminent elfin entertainer has taken his latest side-project on the road in search of fame, fortune, shots of free tequila and vermin-free sleeping quarters. The Hacienda Brothers—fronted by Gaff and the Paladins' Dave Gonzales, with bassist Hank Gallup, drummer Dale Daniels and steel guitarist David Berzansky in tow—have been touring the Southwest these past several weeks and apparently made quite a splash at the recent South By Southwest fete with their crazed country/soul hybrid thang. According to Austin-music-scene big shot Steve Dean, “They tore it up. Everybody was talking about their set, and they created a huge buzz down here.” The Bros. already have a record in the can, produced in Nashville by veteran soul-music mensch Dan Penn—former partner with Chips Moman at legendary hit factory American Studios and composer of such R&B/pop classics as Aretha Franklin's “Do Right Woman, Do Right Man,” the Box Tops' “The Letter” and “Cry Like a Baby,” and James N Bobby Purify's “I'm Your Puppet.” They're shopping the project to various labels and hoping for a release by year's end. “Dan was great to work with, and he wrote a tune for the album, too,” said an obviously stoked Gonzo. “Man, wait'll you hear this thing; you're gonna love it. We've been getting a great response wherever we play. I mean, Gaff just sitting and playing acoustic guitar should sell out anywhere, but I just can't wait till you hear this band.” Asked for comment of his own, Gaff replied, “I love you, maaaan.” No, really! The Hacienda Bros. return to SoCal in time to sneak in a Doll Hut show on April 18, between Paladins performances for Gonzo and Cold Hard Facts/Dave Alvin N the Guilty Men gigs for the Gaff. (Buddy Seigal)

Sandy Sings N Sins

Big Sandy's former longtime label, Hightone Records, will release a collection of uptempo tracks on April 27 called Rockin' Big Sandy. The compilation features 15 fave ravers from all of Sandy's half-dozen Hightone discs, a bonus video of Sandy singing “My Sinning Days Are Over,” and, as if to mitigate that sentiment, a positively filthy, previously unreleased track called “Backdoor Dan—Version X,” which is all about the pleasures of poop-chute rootin,' which I find hysterical, but which is unlikely to please Sandy's mommy. I should mention in the interest of full disclosure that yers trooly wrote the liner notes, increasing the package's value immeasurably. (BS)

Website O' The Month

How do you know when the tribute-band trend has gone too far? Easy—click up www.lilgnr.com. All we wanna know is: Does the heroin they shoot come in child-sized portions? (Rich Kane)

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