The Kentucky Headhunters/Bad Touch/Hazel – Sheffield, The Corporation – 5 October 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Geno D   
Friday, 27 October 2017 20:23

In a world that is completely in chaos sometimes the only refuge is music. That is something I have lived by since I was a child.  


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Over the years, I have seen many ands in many different genres and enjoyed many good times with the bands and many have become good friends of the years. Tonight’ I get to have a good ol' night with The Kentucky Headhunters and Bad Touch, both whom I have been a fan of and become friends with. 


The night is kicked off by Hazel, of whom I only managed to catch the last couple of songs - but what I did see and hear from this female fronted group is that a) girls can rock and b) her range is fantastic. While they are still young, the potential is there, so we will be hearing more from them.


Now, while it has taken other members of the rock media community a while to admit these guys are ones to watch for the future, this is something a few of us have known for the last four years. Bad Touch are a down to earth bonafide rock band. They have the look, the attitude, and most importantly they have the songs and the riffs.


Bad Touch 1


And, tonight, the guys are in form.  They have been main support on this tour and, to be honest, everytime I see them they get better. While most of the show consists of tracks off the latest album, 'Truth Be Told', a couple of covers have been thrown in for good measure. But Stevie Westwood is a phenomenal front man, with a waxed moustache and paisley shirts, which somehow don't detract from his amazing vocals. The sound on a lot of the new tracks are more blues related and even a little twang of country is there at times which has made them perfect for this tour. By the time they have finished their set the crowd is wanting more from these guys. (Which to be honest the crowd can have when they return on their own headline tour in Nov.). Bad Touch have worked their butts off and deserve all the attention they are receiving at the moment. Good luck and we will catch up with them again very soon.


Now for anybody who knows me, I have been a champion of southern-influenced bands here in the UK for more than 20 years.  With all the new country-styled bands - the likes of The Cadillac Three, Whiskey Myers, Blackberry Smoke, 1000 Horses, etc. - it started a very long time ago with The Kentucky Headhunters.


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Brothers Richard and Fred Young, along with guitarist Greg Martin have been playing in bands together since 1968 (Itchy Brother ‘68-‘82, KHH ‘86-present) and Doug Phelps has been there since the start of the KHH - so tonight they give the crowd a history lesson in blues, country, and rock. The crowd is a mix of young and old, with a lot of the new bands being present on T-shirts. Southern rock has always been about the music and it's many influences. Almost 20 years ago Nashville didn't know what to do with these guys, as they have always played by their own rules. So, they just kept on going.


Whether it is Doug or Richard on lead vocals, it doesn't make much difference as they both have a passion in their voice and the crowd love it. But, everyone almost has a cry along with Richard as he shows his passion and admiration for the late, great Jamey Johnson. 


To be honest, these guys have been living and playing the rock ‘n’ roll dream for almost 50 years - and it doesn't look like they will be stopping any time soon.  Greg Martin is a force to be reckoned with and his licks are just as subtle and gut wrenching as the likes of Clapton. And when it comes to drum solos, it’s well watching Fred Young perform: it is truly something you can watch time and time again.


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While many have come and gone in the southern rock genre, The KHHs never blew their own horns and time has proven just how big of an influence these guys have had on the new breed of bands coming out: if you don't believe me, just look at Black Stone Cherry and tell me the country, blues and rock don't mix and haven't found new ground. Well, I did have to give the next generation Young a shout out LOL!


In the end, there is one thing that these good ol' boys do well and that is let each other shine. For those that had never seen these guys before, they left as new fans and lovers of music. And I leave happy to have seen the guys again and knowing why I love music as much as I do. Bands like The KHHs do it for the passion and enjoyment and that translates on a global scale and a little southern charm doesn't hurt either.


PHOTO CREDIT: All photos © 2017 Shot By Simmons/ Über Rock. You can view our full gallery of photographs HERE.


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