Published on May 21st, 2016 | by TLV News0
“Loosen the Bible Belt” tour stops today at Lamar Lounge in Oxford, Mississippi – Saturday, May 21, 2016
Expect a stand-up comedy show that stumbled upon a revival, and imagine it all happens in a bar.
Pastor Jay Bakker (son of Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker, founder of Revolution Church and host of This is Radiocast podcast) and comedian Kristen Becker (Founder of Dykes of Hazard Comedy) are teaming up for a second time in the name of equality.
Becker, an outspoken lesbian comedian, recently stumbled across a copy of the documentary, One Punk Under God, which featured Pastor Bakker and his church, Revolution Ministries. Becker was enthralled with Pastor Bakker’s personal revelation that the LGBT community was being unfairly shut out of their religious community.
Seeing his genuine interest in doing what was right, and knowing that a large percentage of her Southern friends raised Christian were shut out of their own churches, Becker reached out to Bakker. A few Twitter messages and emails later, Loosen the Bible Belt was born. This May, the pair will hop in a bio-diesel tour bus with some opening acts and a full band to spread love and laughter across the Bible Belt.
On May 21, 2016, their tour will stop at Lamar Lounge in Oxford, Mississippi.
Bakker’s tattooed and pierced persona combined with Becker’s raucous and rowdy comedy promise to be a crowd-pleasing combo for those in the South who believe all are created equal. Bakker’s message of love and acceptance, balanced with Becker’s comedy (referred to as “bawdy and bold, served with a slice of Southern charm”), promises a night to remember.
The Heavenly Chillbillies are on the Bill
The Heavenly Chillbillies formed in Buffalo, New York in early 2008 and they knew right away that their unique blend of rockabilly and country infused blues was something special, and thus wasted no time getting down to the business of making music. Within a few months the band began playing locally and immediately developed a solid fan base, which resulted in several residencies at local clubs.
The Heavenly Chillbillies exemplify the spirit of DIY musicianship. They maintain a 2,000 sq/ft commercial space known as Chilliam Studios. The space houses a commercial recording studio, a full service screen printing shop, as well as a rehearsal and live performance space that is used for several live music podcasts.
“This Buffalo band rips through a healthy catalog of blues, country, rock, and honky tonk; in other words, Americana. The Heavenly Chillbillies play with a wild and loud guitar-fronted recklessness a la Dan Baird, suited for gin mills and buckets of blood. Whether it’s a shuffle, a boogie, or a beer-soaked rave-up, the trio dishes out heaps of blue collar, redneck fun.”
– Frank De Blase,
Rochester City Newspaper
In an effort to contribute and grow their own local music scene they have produced recordings for many other Buffalo bands including Second Trip, The Naturalists, Pine Fever, 240 North, Jono Rosen, and they are sponsors of the Artvoice B.O.O.M. competition providing free recordings and merch packages to all of the runners up.
In the summer of 2015 the band took the DIY spirit to the next level by purchasing a 40 foot MCI tour bus that runs on waste vegetable oil. They secured the bus through a combination of earnings from performances and Chilliam Studios, commercial sponsorship, and a successful crowd-funding campaign on IndieGoGo.
The bus has 5 bedrooms, a bathroom, ample seating and storage which allows them to travel anywhere with little concern for fuel and lodging costs.
Musically, the group performs an eclectic mix of original music and covers; making every song they perform their own. It is not unusual to hear Chris Isaac, Dwight Yohkam, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Bruce Springsteen, and Spinal Tap all in the same show.
Their first album of original music, A Long Time Coming came out in 2011 and it still sells well at their shows and on the internet.
Currently, the band is putting the finishing touches on a new album of original music that is fan tested. Hot Rods from Hell, The Chillbillies latest self produced and recorded effort, will be released in early 2016.
The Heavenly Chillbillies attitude about performing music everywhere and often is quite simple, “Bring it on; we’ll sleep when we’re dead.”
For The Heavenly Chillbillies playing music is not a hobby or recreation, it is a requirement, their retirement plan, and their way of life. For their fans, it’s a rollicking’ good time.