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These Boys are Bad... But Jesus Loves Them - Beaumont, Texas' Ole Lonesome at This is Home Festival

I have photographed music festivals all over the world and have been blessed to have worked for and met some incredible musicians. I always say, one need not venture far from their front door to encounter the incredible, and so it was when I went to photograph the This is Home Festival in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Lake Charles is just under an hour drive from my front door in Beaumont, Texas, and I was happy to go catch some incredible live music. In particular, I was looking very forward to photographing the performance by Beaumont's own Ole Lonesome. Zach Feemster and his solid and spectacular bandmates did not disappoint. In fact, truth be told, I think they were the best act at the This is Home Festival, which included a lineup of stellar performers from Kate Watson and Yvette Landry, to the headliner the Samantha Fish Band featuring Jesse Dayton, who is also a native of Beaumont.

The boys in Ole Lonesome are bad... just filthy... grungy... funky... blues disciples... and the badder they get... the more Jesus loves them. Describing Ole Lonesome is akin to trying to describe what a Super-Sonic Jet is to a common house fly. If the Jimi Hendrix Experience, Led Zeppelin, Janis Joplin, Johnny Cash, Townes Van Zandt, and ZZ Top got together and had a musical love child, it would be Ole Lonesome. Still, once you try to pen them down to one genre of music they come at you hard and hit you with something unexpected.

Their performance at the This is Home Festival was the fourth time I had caught them live in the last few years and it was Ole Lonesome at their best. The bigger the stage, the larger the crowd, the nastier they get and they delivered an electric sermon to the the happy ears of Lake Charles. They played older standards such as Tore Up, Stepping Stone and Tip on In, and they also ripped the cellophane off of their new album, Tejas Motel and baptized the crowd in their blues with Gold Chevy, Easy Street and Momma's Worry. Tejas Motel, produced by Mike Zito and will be released July 14, 2023 on Gulf Coast Records.

I had a chance to visit with Zach Feemster back stage before the show, along with Greg

Achord (guitar), Jimmy Devers (drums), J. Wesley Hardin (bass), and Gregory Mosley (keys), and it was obvious Ole Lonesome was looking forward to hitting the stage. Songs from the new album were waiting to be unleashed on Louisiana. Feemster told me in his almost shy voice, "Jerome... it's good to see you. We have some new music I think you are going to like." Once the lights came on and the MC introduced them it was full force boogie, Southeast Texas style, full of swamp water, oil slicks and Lone Star beer. If you have not had the pleasure of being introduced to the music of Ole Lonesome, just follow the link provided and crawl into a beautiful world of really good music.Ole Lonesome would love to take you along for a toe-tapping, hip-shaking ride.

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