Houston Calling

Ten Questions for Luxurious Panthers

December 18th, 2003 · No Comments

One of the times I was sitting up at Cecil’s, a song came on the jukebox that made me pay particular attention to it and find out what band it was. Not that the place doesn’t have a good jukebox, but none of the stuff on it is that new so to hear something I hadn’t heard a hundred times before was surprising.

The song was “Pomade and Hand Grenades” and the band was Luxurious Panthers–a band I knew was a local act. Since then, I have seen the band play in Houston a few times (mostly with Flametrick Subs). They always put on a great show.

The band plays this Friday night with Austin’s Flametrick Subs at Walter’s on Washington.

I emailed Buddy Dee, Luxurious Panthers‘ bass player, and asked him a few questions for Houston Calling. He was gracious enough to respond.

Ten Questions for Luxurious Panthers

HC: How did your CD end up on the jukebox at Cecil’s?

Buddy Dee: Our rhythm guitar guy, “Shakee West,” usually has his ass parked at the bar there every day. He some how snuck a panther’s CD into the jukebox. I guess they dig it though, they left it in there.

HC: Where do you get the inspiration for your music and lyrics?

BD: Most of our stuff comes from everyday life, stories we know or inside jokes. Sometimes they are stories from the road. Once in a while, they are penned in a drunken haze, and our singer will just wake up with a killer tune next to him.

HC: You’ve played with a lot of great bands, sometimes with the Flametrick Subs. They’re great–I went to college with the guys known as Clem and Buster. Did you like playing with them?

BD: Yea, right now the Subs are just about the best band for us to play with. We just fit togther well and create a hell of a bill. They have a good thing going for them, and our styles mesh well together.

HC: What is the one description that you hate to hear about your band?

BD: It sucks to be thought of as just another rockabilly band. We are that but there is also alot more there. We are not just another band playing standards or trying to recreate a sound from the fifties. We are making original music with contemporary lyrics that are relevant to the modern world. It’s not all just sock hops and hot dogs.

HC: A lot of rockabilly bands are out there but not many have made it very far. I guess Reverend Horton Heat is an exception. What’s your take on the state of the music industry right now?

BD: The music industry is just that, an industry. It is just someone trying to make a buck off someone else’s art. Unfortunately most bands just want to make it. I don’t think they know how nasty that industry is out there. I don’t want someone shaping my music to make it radio friendly. I Think the Rev got lucky to have some success with his own style and sound. I do think that the bigwigs tore apart his sound too, if you look at his major label releases you can see it.

HC: How are you using the internet as a tool to market your band?

BD: The internet has been a great tool for niche marketing. Now, any body in the world who likes greasy rockabilly can search and find us on the web with no problem. It has turned our regional act into one that is available all over the globe.

HC: What’s your take on the Houston music scene?

BD: The Houston Music scene is kind of limping along. There seem to be more musicians and bands than there are people to fill the clubs. I know there are lot of underground scenes and bands I don’t know about, but Houston hasn’t been the best place to be in a band. The clubs just don’t pay bands here, and they don’t support the acts. They just want to make a buck off your crowd and pay you as little as possible. We’ve been lucky to find a few places that treat us with respect and give us some decent pay.

HC: Have you seen the latest video by Johnny Cash–the one for “Hurt” by Nine Inch Nails? If so, what did you think of that? If not, whatis your favorite Johnny Cash song?

BD: You know, I still haven’t seen that one, but the best Johnny Cash song has got to be “Sunday Morning Comin’ Down” — That shit makes me cry.

HC: What are the plans for The Luxurious Panthers in 2003?

BD: A new CD, hopefully it will be ready for Spring 2004. Just in time for the Panthers’ 10th anniversary party & CD release. Next is a greatest hits, probably 2005. Other than that, keep playing as many gigs as as possible, and spread the word where we can.

HC: What is in your CD player right now?

BD: Hasil Adkins, Out To Hunch…Ray Price, The Other Woman…Starline Rhythm Boys, Better Luck Is a Bar Room Away…Little Richards, Georgia Peach on Specialty Records.

Visit the Luxurious Panthers on the web here.

Now Playing in my iPod: The MissionBBC Radio 1 Live in Concert

Tags: Music