Jug Free America was a jug band I played in, which existed from 2001-2005. We played a mix of old jug band tunes, early blues/pre-blues, old-time, country, ragtimey stuff and acoustic reggae. I don’t usually go around promoting my own stuff on the show, but just objectively, this band is worth checking out.
Posted here is our final CD- “Jug Free America- California: 2005”
(Click Here to download)
This was recorded on the fly by Chris Patchett at his house in Berkeley, CA in the summer of 2005, shortly before the band broke up. I think we got real good by the end! This album has never been released anywhere, so this is its debut.
– Eli (host, etc. Down Home Radio)
“These guys are really good” – Ramblin’ Jack Elliott
Jug Free America moved to Oakland, California in the fall of 2004 from their previous hometown of Oberlin, Ohio. They played gigs around the Bay Area through the fall of 2005. The group formed in Ohio in 2001 while students at Oberlin College. From 2001-2005 they played gigs all over the United States and in Poland, where they toured in 2004.
See below for more information- personnel, track listing, etc:
Lech Wierzynski – vocal, trumpet, guitar, harmonica – Currently plays in the band The California Honey Drops
Nansamba Ssensalo – vocal, jug, tub – Currently plays in the band The California Honey Drops
Michael Coleman – vocal, washboard, drums, kazoo – Currently plays in the band Beep!
Harry Bolles – vocal, guitar, slide guitar, harmonica – Currently playing solo/ad hoc gigs
Jacob Groopman – vocal, manjo, guitar, percussion – Currently plays in the band Albino!
Jay Gandhi – bansuri (flute), vocal – Currently playing Indian classical music with various groups
Eli Smith – vocal, banjo, guitar, manjo, harmonica, kazoo – Currently playing solo gigs and as part of the Roots ‘n’ Ruckus music collective, and hosting Down Home Radio!
Track listing for –
Jug Free America: California 2005
1. Candy Man
2. Nice Time
3. Leavin’ Here Blues
4. Small Axe
5. Bye Bye, Sweet Roseanna
6. On The Road Again
7. Lonesome Whistle
8. Cackle Hen
9. Who’s Feels It Knows It
10. Go a Letter From My Darlin’
11. Summer Time
12. Tough Luck
13. K.C. Moan
14. Keep On Movin’
15. Longest Train
The website- http://www.jugfreeamerica.net
Clipping – Oberlin News-Tribune, March, 16, 2004
Jug Free America poster from the tour of Poland