Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Southern Fried Sunday celebrates 10 years with total festival atmosphere (Will's Pub)

Posted By on Tue, Jan 19, 2016 at 3:29 PM

THIS LITTLE UNDERGROUND 

Two important local concert institutions notch big anniversaries this week: live series Southern Fried Sunday (10 years) and show promoter Norsekorea (five years). Presenting countless hours of good times and great bands, these are two of the most respected names in the Orlando music scene. So big salutes to them both for all their work and scene enrichment.

click to enlarge Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot) - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot)
SFS’s recent blowout celebration (Jan. 17, Will’s Pub) met the occasion with sheer scale. What began as a scrappy little down-home gathering at the old Copper Rocket has, under the loving stewardship and supernova spirit of Jessica Pawli, has graduated to a primetime pillar of the local scene, sometimes even spilling beyond the walls of its current base of operations at Will’s Pub and taking over other venues and lots along the Mills Ave. strip during special editions. For its momentous 10th anniversary, SFS popped the cork by bringing a studded large-venue package deal (Reverend Horton Heat, Unknown Hinson, Nashville Pussy and the Red Elvises) to the most colorful neighborhood in the city for a crazy bargain ($10 advance, $15 door). That there is going big.

With all the major headlining action happening on an outside stage in the Will’s Pub parking lot, the scene was total festival atmosphere, only with a shitload more motorcycles and hot rods than your usual. And the music justified all the buzz.

click to enlarge Igor & the Red Elvises at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot) - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Igor & the Red Elvises at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot)
After some core lineup changes, Red Elvises frontman and guitarist Igor Yuzov rechristened the act Igor and the Red Elvises and built a new band that’s now all ladies. Smart man.

click to enlarge Igor & the Red Elvises at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot) - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Igor & the Red Elvises at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot)
click to enlarge Igor & the Red Elvises at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot) - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Igor & the Red Elvises at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot)
But the goofy-great showmanship that’s made the Red Elvises such a stalwart party band? Still essentially the same, thankfully, with all the beloved show signatures (crowd-weaving conga line, drum solo, audience participation) still intact.

click to enlarge Nashville Pussy at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot) - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Nashville Pussy at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot)
Once the almighty Nashville Pussy got on, gears switched fast from campy Russian levity to unapologetically lurid American pulp. But like the Red Elvises – and all the other members of this tour for that matter – nothing much changes in what they deliver live. And when it’s a strapping set of ass-kicking, dick-swinging rock like this, that’s a very good thing.

click to enlarge Nashville Pussy at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot) - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Nashville Pussy at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot)
click to enlarge Nashville Pussy at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot) - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Nashville Pussy at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot)
Also reliably solid was the Reverend Horton Heat. But the night’s single most special treat was when this headliner played as the backing band for cult hero Unknown Hinson. Now that’s a formidable setup worth triple the price of admission – if anything, just for the legendary guitar dream team of two outstanding leading men concentrated onto one stage.

click to enlarge Unknown Hinson and the Reverend Horton Heat at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot) - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Unknown Hinson and the Reverend Horton Heat at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot)
click to enlarge Unknown Hinson and the Reverend Horton Heat at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot) - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Unknown Hinson and the Reverend Horton Heat at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot)
Amid all the hard-rocking national headliners, however, some of the highlights of the event were the quietest. One was local roots-rocker Mike Dunn doing a warm, chest-swelling acoustic cover of the Replacements’ “Bastards of Young.” The other was the Reverend Horton Heat himself praising local rockabilly trio the Wildtones onstage and then asking them offstage to tour with him.

click to enlarge The Reverend Horton Heat at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot) - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • The Reverend Horton Heat at Southern Fried Sunday's 10th anniversary (Will's Pub lot)
Nothing sums up just how far and deep Southern Fried Sunday has woven itself into the Orlando cultural fabric quite like standing there in the thick of the large, rocking congregation gathered for the celebration. Despite the significantly expanded special-event scale, it still had that famous familial vibe. That’s because, even more than a Horton Heat show, it was Southern Fried Sunday. That’s why it’s one of those truly great Orlando things. And it was some party.

If you weren’t there, you missed one for the ages. But chin up, sweetheart, you can still catch the other big local fete. The Norsekorea anniversary will span this entire upcoming weekend with Day 1 (Jan. 23) at Backbooth with Shannon & the Clams, Golden Pelicans, Wet Nurse, Guy Blakeslee and Dumber Bunnies and Day 2 (Jan. 24) at Will’s Pub with the Attack, Panther Camp, the Areolas, Vicious Dreams and Clay Monster.

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This Little Underground is Orlando Weekly's music column providing perspective, live reviews and news on the city's music scene.

Follow Bao on Twitter (@baolehuu)
Email Bao: baolehuu@orlandoweekly.com

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