Gypsy punk rockers Strung Like A Horse hail from Chattanooga, but their explosive live sound is more like a full-speed freight train straight from Hades. The band’s wild stage energy is contagious, and even the most uptight of audiences will fall into total dancing chaos under frontman Clay Maselle’s intense gaze. He’s backed by B.J. Hightower (bass/vocals), Crispy (percussion) and one Spooky Fiddler (obviously). Don’t be alarmed when they slip a little kazoo into the mix. Continuing their 2016 tour, SLAH will perform twice in Florida this month and then in Knoxville on April 1 at Scruffy City.
AA: Where did your band name come from?
SLAH: Clay and his buddy came up with the name Durango Colorado. I think the duo played a couple shows there under the name, and, years later, when Clay and Ben accidentally started a band, they called it Strung Like A Horse. No one intended for it to leave the basement and now here we are.
AA: What is your craziest tour story?
SLAH: Once we drove 6 ½ hours to our Friday night show just to find out three other bands were billed there. Turns out someone who wasn’t supposed to book us did and didn’t tell anyone. We cobbled together some PA gear and played after everyone else … We crashed with friends of friends several miles away, and Clay woke up and couldn’t open his eyes — severe pink eye in both eyes. We had to get him to a doctor because, that night, we were opening for Travis Tritt. Clay’s eyes were solid red, real creepy like.
AA: If you ever went to prison, what would be your hobby?
AA: If you could tour with anyone dead or alive, who would it be?
SLAH: John Hartford, The Violent Femmes, Split Lip Rayfield, The Kinks, ELO. Actually, if that was a single-show bill, we’d all stroke out from excitement.
AA: What was the first instrument each of you ever played?
SLAH: Clay: mandolin; BJ: piano; Fiddler: electric bass; Ben: bass guitar; Crispy: guitar
AA: Where is your favorite venue to perform at?
SLAH: There’s a smoky, dirty, little venue in Chattanooga called JJ’s Bohemia … the crowd is the most enthusiastic fun-loving badass group of folks. They’re like that every time. It’s so intimate and the energy is palpable.
AA: If you could be any liquor, what would you be?
SLAH: That’s tough. It would have to be American as hell and not for the faint of heart. It would need to have some definite burn and a vintage feel — maybe even a little murky and rough. It would also need to be clearly different than its peers and lively — very lively. Bulleit Rye or maybe Wasmund’s.
AA: If you were subjected to listen to any album for the rest of your life, what would it be?
SLAH: The Wall, Pink Floyd; Aereo, John Hartford; In Utero, Nirvana