MAD Hatters — Hootananny’s upstairs venue — is turning back the clock with the first in a series of regular Jumpin’ Hot rock’n’roll/rhythm & blues themed club nights.
Resident DJ Rosco Smith will be spinning original vinyl records, while providing live sounds will be Jumpin’ Hot’s own house band, The Shiverin' Sheiks from Glasgow.
Frontman Dave Dixon spoke to us about the band.
What can we expect from a Jumpin’ Hot Club Night?
A lotta Jumpin’ for starters, and it’ll be fairly hot as well so either way you won’t need a jumper. We’ll be doing our rock’n’roll/country/doo-wop/gospel/swing thing, Rosco Smith will be spinnin’ the tunes till 2am and Hoots’ll be having itself a ball. Hoots Mon, there’ll be mooses loose!
What brought the four of you together to create The Shiverin’ Sheiks?
We had all been in various bands around Glasgow before including The Bottleneckers, The Five Aces, The Hidden Masters, The Needles, Boogaloo Investigators, The MeatMen and The Guilded Angels (to name but a few!) and thought it might be fun to mix together all the stuff we liked that we hadn’t necessarily played with other bands — doo-wop, big ballads, western swing, showtunes and mix it in with the rock’n’roll and R’n’B we were more familiar with and see what happened.
So far it seems to have worked out alright!
You hark back to the golden age of ‘50s music. Do you have any unsung heroes from the era we should know about?
Any songs written by Leiber and Stoller are generally excellent, as is any stuff recorded in RCA Studio B with their fantastic session team of Chet Atkins, Grady Martin etc.
Loads of great famous artists recorded their who we love such as Roy Orbison, Patsy Cline, The Everlys, and Elvis, but a guy who we love and I don’t think gets enough recognition is Don Gibson.
There’s some great R’n’B artists who I guess a lot of punters out there might not have heard of such as Nappy Brown, Little Willie John and Jimmy McCracklin. Doo-wop stuff, like the Flamingos and the 5 Royales, is also a big influence on us.
Outside of the rock’n’roll thing the ’50s is remembered for there is a lot of great stuff as well from big dramatic pop like Frankie Laine, crooners like Mel Tourme, and gospel, like Sister Rosetta Tharpe and The Jubillaires.
You also seem to take great care to reproduce the era with your look and instruments. Any particularly prized instruments?
I’ve got a 1959 Hofner Senator, Dunc’s got a self-made telecaster that’s about as close as you’ll get to a real ’50s one, Ross has got a very showbizzy sparkly early-60s Ludwig drumkit and Richard’s got a very fetching white double bass that the ladies seem to like.
But then he would have.
You recently toured with Glasvegas. What was that experience like?
Fantastic. Wasn’t sure how we’d go down with their crowd to be honest but every night was an absolute blast. They’ve got a really passionate fanbase, which was inspiring to see, but they also seemed to take to us as well. The Glasvegas guys could not have been nicer, made us feel really welcome and went out of their way to help where they could.
We also managed to pick up some new Japanese fans along the way so maybe a trip to the East could be in the offing!
What’s coming up next for the Shiverin' Sheiks?
We just put the album, A Curious Case of The Shiverin’ Sheiks out at the end of last year and so far that’s been very well received and we’ve a few festivals and things over the summer aside from our usual five or six gigs a week.
There’s our other project of all original songs, The Strange Blue Dreams, that we’re just starting to get going with an album ready to go soon. We’ve also recorded an album with a guy called Les Johnson which we’ll be releasing and touring soon and have just started work on an album with another fantastic singer called Christine Boville.
So watch this space..A whole lotta Sheikin’ going on!
• The Shiverin' Sheiks appear at the first Jumpin’ Hot club night on Saturday 29th March at Mad Hatters Church Street, Inverness.
Jumpin’ Hot will return on 7th June, 4th October and 29th November.
Doors open 9.30pm and entry is free.