GA-20 clearly is on to something big. It’s a movement, a new traditional blues revival. The dynamic, throwback blues trio are disciples of the place where traditional blues, country & rock ‘n’ roll intersect. Guitarist Matt Stubbs & guitarist/vocalist Pat Faherty, & drummer Tim Carman have been at the forefront of this traditional blues revival since they first formed back in 2018. It’s no wonder they skyrocketed to the top of the Billboard Blues Charts. Since day one, GA-20 has drawn inspiration for their old-school sounds from the music they love by artists such as Otis Rush, J.B. Lenoir, Howlin’ Wolf, Junior Wells, Hound Dog Taylor, Lloyd Price, Johnny “Guitar” Watson and so many others. Performing with what feels like reckless abandon, GA-20 brings a timeless immediacy to every song they play with a sound that continues to grow & evolve. Matt Stubbs is a 14-year veteran of legendary blues master Charlie Musselwhite’s touring band, and has performed with James Cotton & John Hammond, among many others. Stubbs met Faherty in Boston, and their mutual love of traditional electric blues, R&B, & rock ‘n’ roll led them to write, perform & eventually record their modern vision of this life-altering music. GA-20 quickly drew a large following, and the band soon signed with acclaimed soul/R&B label Colemine Records/Karma Chief Records, releasing their debut in 2019 to widespread critical & popular acclaim. On ‘Crackdown’, GA-20’s 3rd full-length release, the band creates an unvarnished, ramshackle blues that is at once traditional & refreshingly modern. Expanding on their previous releases (2019’s Lonely Soul & 2021’s ‘Try It…You Might Like It! GA-20 Does Hound Dog Taylor’) GA-20 finds inspiration on the edges of the genre, where early electric blues first converged with country & rock ‘n’ roll.
I had the chance to catch up with Matt Stubbs ahead of the October 4th event here in Madison at The Bur Oak. Matt gives a quick preview of the event and then we spend a little time getting into this fantastic new release, ‘Crackdown’. We find out how and where it really fits into the catalog, how the title track shaped up and I have to tell you, I cannot wait for people to hear any part of this album stretched out at a live show. Matt gives a peek into what he’s been listening tp and which track off the new album he’d choose to build a set around. This band…this album…this show.