Bumper Jacksons brings everyone into the party with its wide range of early American music—from bluegrass to country swing to old-time blues. The band started as a duo, a citymeets-country experiment between songstress Jess Eliot Myhre and banjo player Chris Ousley. They hopped on bicycles, touring the country with instruments on their backs, seeking to reimagine roots music. In five short years, Bumper Jacksons grew to a brassy seven-piece group, with horns and pedal steel.
The band is currently touring and promoting its latest album I’ve Never Met a Stranger, released in 2017, and the single White Horse, released in May 2018. White Horse was written by Myhre, who was inspired by the 2017 women’s march in Washington, D.C., as well as the #MeToo movement. It is an anthem to the feminine experience and the powers within. But it is also a rallying cry to the power of collective action, shunning the idea that any “rescuer” character is needed to drive a movement.
Bumper Jacksons has played a huge range of venues and also offers educational opportunities to its audiences. These include a Blues 101 workshop as well as classes in old-time instruments such as washboard and ukulele.
Unafraid to scrap together new sounds from forgotten records, the band elegantly balances paying homage to the traditions while fashioning its own unique, playful style. Hard-swinging grooves and roadhouse drinking songs are offset by delicate waltzes of loss and regret. At the center of it all is an invitation to join in, whether in a rowdy dance, a moment of soulful intimacy or a movement to make a better world.
Bumper Jacksons will appear for one night only at the Federal Way Performing Arts and Event Center on Friday, March 29, 2019, at 8 p.m.
For ticket reservations, visit fwpaec.org, or call the box office at 253.835.7010.