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Jimbo Mathus to take Columbus concertgoers down south with country, soul sound

Courtesy of Angie Carlson

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A deep Mississippi sound is scheduled to breathe into Columbus Thursday through Jimbo Mathus and the Tri-State Coalition.

“I call it catfish music,” Mathus said. “It’s a Mississippi blend of soul, country, rock ‘n’ roll and blues, and of course it’s all original sound but it’s heavy electric sound.”   

Born and raised in Mississippi, Mathus started the blues band Squirrel Nut Zippers in North Carolina. But in 2003, he went back to Mississippi and got together with the Tri-State Coalition. 

Guitarist Matt Pierce, drummer Terrence Bishop, keyboardist Eric Carlton, Kell Kellum on pedal steel and bassist Ryan Rogers comprise Mathus’ band and helped create the album “White Buffalo,” which released Jan. 22.

The performance is scheduled for the Woodlands Backyard at 8 p.m., with Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band and Alvin Youngblood Hart.

Mathus released “White Buffalo” with Fat Possum Records. This is his first big label release in about 10 years, said Mathus, who has been releasing albums since the ’90s.

Mathus said he has been putting out records since 2006 and has about 10 to 12 under his own name. Starting at age 6 he played mandolin in his family band, according to a press release for his tour.

Students agreed that Mathus has a very original yet old sound. 

“It sounds a lot like the late ’60s, early ’70s psychedelic phase that went on,” said Katie Morell, a graduate student in music.  

Although she said it isn’t her favorite type of music, she could see how people would enjoy listening to it and watching the performance. 

“I expected it to sound more country, but it reminded me of old rock ‘n’ roll,” said Julia Endicott, a first-year in engineering.

This will be Mathus’ first time in Columbus with this particular group. He has performed here before with the Squirrel Nut Zippers, however he said his current band is nothing like his last.

Mathus said one song in particular is also great for this band.

“The title track ‘White Buffalo’ is my favorite one (to perform),” Mathus said. “It just very high-energy and a very heavy sound and showcases the band off and has a nice a powerful rhythm section. It’s just a lot of fun and gets a lot out of the audience.”

Mathus set the bar high for his show.

“It will be the best show (the audience) have ever seen in their lives, hands down,” Mathus said with a chuckle. “If they like southern rock ‘n’ roll, southern storytelling and a kick-ass band, they can’t miss it.” 

Woodlands Backyard is located at 668 Grandview Ave. General admission tickets cost $15 and can be purchased in advance. 

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