Will Stewart at MASS, Country Rock with Sur Duda and Mañana Cowboy

will stewart3Will Stewart at Main at South Side Fort Worth, TX | Photo Credit: Jessica Waffles 

By Jessica Waffles

I finally had a chance to see Cameron Smith Sur Duda. It was great to see the band in action after listening to Paper Knife so many times. This was also my first time to see Peter Marsh take charge of a guitar—I’m used to seeing him on drums. This dude has got the chops!

I loved hearing so many songs I recognized including personal favorites “Rearrange the Room,” and “Baby Teeth.” Cameron Smith has the familiar conviction I see in a lot of Fort Worth bandleaders – ready to let their songs bleed out of their veins onto the stage. The good vibes rushed over me. I was glad to be listening to this wonderful band.

sur duda4Cameron Smith of Sur Duda at Main at South Side Fort Worth|Photo Credit: Jessica Waffles

Will Stewart from Birmingham, AL was an interesting addition to this lineup, especially considering I was expecting more of a super country vibe. But it was much more than that. There were dreamy elements in the guitar solos, giving it a quality of what I would call psychedelic alt-southern country music. Janet Simpson sings beautifully harmonizing with Stewart, as well as taking the lead on a few songs herself. Simpson and bassist Bobby Wason are part of the usual lineup, with drummer Mac Kramer joining them on tour for just a couple of weeks out of the year. What a treat that was! I enjoyed Kramer’s hyper-attentive style on the kit, feeling jazz & folk influences that paired well with Stewart’s introspective tendencies. Their set kinda made me wanna drink whiskey with their country feels, folky harmonies and heavy simple bass lines.

manana cowboy5Mañana Cowboy frontman at Main at South Side Fort Worth | Photo Credit: Jessica Waffles

Mañana Cowboy has a spacey, upbeat sound, immediately drawing my attention to its comforting atmosphere. Seeing them live made me wonder why I hadn’t listened to them before. Singer Houston Holtman has a distinct voice that reminds me of Neil Young at times, which is pretty remarkable in combination with the space-pop style of the band. Their record Día Tree will easily fit right in to my personal heavy rotation. Dreamy Life Records houses so many of my favorite alternative bands in the DFW area, including Mañana Cowboy. Check out www.dreamyliferecords.com and discover your next favorite artist.

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