Gal Holiday performs at the New Orleans Jazz Museum on Friday, January 5 at 8:00pm. Tickets are $10.50 and available at the door or online here.
Gal Holiday and the Honky Tonk Revue were at the vanguard of New Orleans’ now-thriving country scene when they formed over a decade ago, and they’ve remained in a league of their own ever since. Combining evocative songwriting, impeccable musicianship, and a twinge of punk sensibility to boot, their infectious Western swing energy has earned them their place in the upper echelon of local favorites and helped grow an avid fan-base of two-steppers around the world.
“The Gal” is Vanessa Niemann, an Appalachian-born songstress who has lent her powerful voice and magnetic stage presence to various musical projects in New Orleans and around the country. In 2017, she was nominated for an Ameripolitan Award in the category of Honky Tonk Female. Over the years, the Revue has counted among its ranks some of the finest musicians in the region. The current roster boasts guitarists Matt Slusher and Justin LeCuyer in addition to drummer Rose Cangelosi, and upright bassist Corey McGillivary, all excellent singers in their own right adding tight harmonies to the sound.
These multi-time Big Easy and Best of the Beat Award recipients have shared the stage with Willie Nelson, Lyle Lovett, the Blind Boys of Alabama, and countless other talents. 2017 will be their tenth year appearing at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. “When it comes to honky tonk,” OffBeat Magazine said of their third and most recent album, Last to Leave, “the real deal’s right here.” Their tunes have reached as high as third on the FAR Charts (Freeform American Roots Music) and the top 100 on the AMA Charts (Americana Airplay, Americana Music Association.)
Last year alone found them touring out to Colorado, up the East Coast and into Detroit plus their monthly trips out to Texas for a residency at The White Horse in Austin. This vigorous touring schedule, however, doesn’t prevent the Honky Tonk Revue from remaining 100% native to their hometown. You can find them raising a ruckus at local dance halls, festivals, and watering holes any day of the week. They know the ins and outs of the country canon and can even get folks swinging to an unexpected pop cover or two. Above all, vivid songwriting is one of the group’s great strengths. Their rollicking foot-stompers and poignant Crescent City tributes alike crackle with an authentic country spirit.
Armed with this kind of versatility and an ever-growing body of original material, they put on a show that never gets old and delights rowdy dancers and buttoned-down diners alike. New Orleans may be most closely associated with jazz and brass, but Gal Holiday and the Honky Tonk Revue prove that the city celebrates its musical diversity with enthusiasm.