9 p.m. Friday
Charley’s Last Stand
4415 S.W. Third
With a coarse growl and catalog chock-full of outlaw country that touches on hard-living, heavy-drinking, dangerous women and auto racing, Danny Trashville is emerging from Pottawatomie County’s small pond of Pink to make a splash in deeper waters across the region.
He’ll play two shows in two weeks: Friday at Charley’s Last Stand and the following Friday at the Midwest Ink and Metal Show in Midwest City.
Beneath the gruff persona is a pop sensibility not entirely divorced from the kind of country crafted in Austin, Texas, and Nashville, Tenn. But with a moniker like Trashville, he knows CMT isn’t going to be sniffing around his shows anytime soon.
“The majority of Nashville musicians from the past 50 to 60 years have been manufactured,” Trashville said. “They are just pretty faces and pretty voices singing someone else’s songs. Everything I put out comes from things I’ve faced; it’s about not having money and facing hard times.”
He has made peace with the improbability of major crossover success and instead has taken another music scene as a model for what he hopes to help build in Oklahoma.
“Rockabilly seems to be set in a specific time, and people are writing the same kind of songs over and over again,” he said. “They take their influences and do the same sort of thing, but still expand the horizons.”
The state and country’s thriving and ageless rockabilly scene is something he’d like to see with more traditional country, a sound that ruled the airwaves decades ago.
“I like to take everything backwards,” Trashville said. “I don’t like seeing country music with distortion on the guitar, like a rock or pop album. I imagine what country music would have been like had electronics and technology not been introduced to it.”
His eponymous debut album, released last fall, blends smirking redneck idolatry with earnest tracks about scraping out a living in rural America.
The majority of his music is high-energy, playing to darkened bars and raucous crowds. “Turn Left” tells an exaggerated tale about a fallen auto racer, while “Hoedown” is Trashville’s ode to a stripper. Both use stick-to-your brain choruses to draw repeat visits on the jukebox, but without devolving into novelty.
The song “Hey Babe” offers an Austin-tinged answer to Trashville’s redneck tendencies by infusing an Old 97’s-styled pining into the album. Trashville is currently recording an EP and one of the first tracks, “Pawn Shop,” reveals a rootsy turn as the musician tries on some Tom Waits gristle. Trashville admitted that he wants a well-rounded catalogue, giving him the ability to respond to the whims of live audiences.
Whether or not the big, bad city ever latches onto Trashville, he said it’ll take quite a bit to pry him away from Pink.
“If I want to play, I have to drive 20 miles just to get in front of people,” he said. “But this definitely gives me time to sit outside, be as loud as I want, hoot and holler, burn a fire and drink beers with my buddies.
“That’s important, because I need to be able to entertain my friends. If I can’t make them smile, laugh or cry or whatever, how am I going to go up in front of a crowd of people who don’t know me and try to entertain them?” –Charles Martin