The Spikedrivers



The Spikedrivers
The Spikedrivers
In 2003 a new sound sprang up in the Rust Belt; a raucous, downand-dirty sound, an intoxicating and gritty sound that pulled
people in droves to dance floors across the Midwest. It was the
sound of The Spikedrivers playing their unique blend of swinging,
bluesy, upbeat, country-fried rock ‘n’ roll. Front man Jesse
Henry’s unique and down-home song writing meets the electrified
ruckus and wild precision of the backing band similar to what
might have been if Woody Guthrie had led NRBQ.
In 2007 with one live album and their first studio album just
released, The Spikedrivers took their show on the road. They
played in eleven states rocking the shores of Massachusetts, the
bright lights of New York, and the fields of Illinois. The band
gained fans across the East Coast and the Midwest. Along the way
The Spikedrivers released their second live CD, “Live in New York
City” which showcased how easily The Spikedrivers can grab hold of
an audience in a packed club and turn them instantly to avid fans.
The Spikedrivers front man is Jesse Henry, who was raised
Mennonite in rural Northwest Ohio and who spent his early years
working on grain elevators and learning songs of the great
American Troubadours. He brings his electrifying stage presence
and musicianship wherever he roams. Megan Palmer, a registered
nurse by day, turns fiddle-playing super hero by night; serenading
the audience with her sultry voice and ravishing them with whitehot fiddle leads. Steve Sweney, best known for his cosmic guitar
work with the band Ekoostik Hookah, gets to showcase a different
side of his playing. He strips down to just amp and guitar and
listeners get to relish the raw tone and intensity. John Boestler
the guitar wizard is the newest member bringing 40-plus years of
experience as well as being Sweney’s early mentor. The rhythm
section and backbone holding it all together are Nate Anders and
Steven Fox. A vibraphonist and college educator, Nate beats the
skins like a pack of hounds is on his tail all the while booming
baritone harmony. Fox brings his lightning-fast bow acrobatics and
hard-thumping sound on the upright bass to adventurous levels as
well as singing his sideburns off.
In the coming year The Spikedrivers look to continue their success
on the road spreading their infectious joy to all who will listen,
and to some who won’t. Gather Round, their second studio album,
will be hot off the presses in May and filled with ear-turning
tunes sure to have people dancing in their homes waiting for the
next live performance. We hope to see you there.
Contact: The Spikedrivers
2683 Dayton Ave
Columbus, OH 43202
[email protected]
“The Spikedrivers deliver sets tailor-made for bustin’ loose. The high energy band was a thing to behold.”
-John Petric, The Other Paper. Columbus, Ohio. July 3, 2008
“The improvisational style and wide variety of musical genres addressed in their music add to its fluidity and
energy. It keeps crowds moving and grooving to an infectious country twang that is infused with the
musical gusto of a rock band and the harmonic appeal of the blues. An energetic menagerie of sonic
-Stephanie Laird, The Athens Times. πAthens, Ohio. January 17, 2008
“Jesse Henry and the Spikedrivers bring the heart and relevance of the dust-bowl era to modern America.
There's heart and hope and a simple stand-up "pride" in this music. I love to put this album on and just
drive; it's like a visit with an honest friend that you haven't seen in a while.”
-CDBaby Customer 2008
“The band is based around talented singer-songwriter Jesse Henry but this is no one-man show. Fiddler
Megan Palmer adds sublime colour to the songs no matter what style the band tackles whilst guitarists
Paul Brown and Steve Sweney prove adept in adding southern-fried flavour. Henry, meanwhile, has a
strong voice in the ‘olde timey’ tradition and he’s not afraid to push it to extremes.”
-Nic Fildes, October 9, 2006
“[Jesse Henry’s]singing and song writing ability lead the spirited Spikedrivers in what they do so damn
well: put the topical on top of the timeless in an irreverently traditional way. In short, this often rowdy band
isn’t designed to contribute to sobriety.
Which brings us to the somewhat hidden strengths of the Spikedrivers, namely the instrumental virtuosity
of fiddle-lady Megan Palmer, guitarists Steve Sweney and Paul Brown and the hard plowing rhythm
section of bassist Steven Fox and drummer Nate Anders. Live they’re at times a veritable tsunami of string
power and down-from-the-holler energies.”
-John Petric, The Other Paper. Columbus,Ohio. July 20,2006
“Put the hammer and see The their blistering blend of country rock. {The
Spikedrivers] known for fine guitar pickin’ and fast fiddlin’.”
-Vicki L. Kroll, Toledo Free Press. Toledo,Ohio. May 17,2006
“The Spikedrivers love to act up- before, during and after any of their foot-stompin’, crazified country
numbers. But the groups singer-songwriter Jesse Henry, fiendish fiddle player Megan Palmer, guitarists
Paul Brown and Steve Sweney, drummer Nate Anders and ZZ Top-mutton-chops bassist Steven Fox do
much more than toss their longhaired, sweaty sleeves around stage. Their sound is a reflection of raw
musical talent, and is has a distinctive flavor that comes out somewhere between The Wilders and Old
Crow Medicine Show. Toss in a few melancholy tunes, the occasional weeping, heaving cello and a
general old-timey feel to their jam, and the only conclusion is that The Spikedrivers deliver exactly what
they advertise. It’s boom-funk-chunk,everything-in-the-kitchen, leave-behind-you-order-and-listen
country kind of music.”
-Jesse nathan, The Pitch. Kansas City,Missouri. April 6,2006
“This is prototypical Americana music: a stew of bluegrass, country, folk, and blues, none dominate, all
contribute considerably. The same can be said of the band members... There are enough positives to
recommend this stew above many groups that are doing similar but not nearly as engaging music.”
-Jeff Weiss,