Are you ready for some black dirt country rock?
The Joe Stamm Band, a high-energy country rock group, will perform from 7 to 11:30 p.m. Saturday in the beer stand at this year’s Herscher Labor Day Celebration.
“I’d like to think it’s a fusion of ’90s country, southern rock and Texas red dirt music with an emphasis on thoughtful lyrics,” said Stamm, an Illinois native.
The Joe Stamm Band is anchored by longtime members Stamm, guitar and lead vocals; Jon Byler Dann, bass guitar and backup singer; Bruce Moser; drums; and Dave Glover, guitar.
The band has performed locally before, and the fans keep drawing him back to the Kankakee area.
“I’ll keep coming back to any place where folks are willing to adsorb the energy we throw at them from stage, make it their own and then throw it right back at us,” Stamm said. “We feed off that energy, and it makes the show not only more fun, but a better experience for everyone involved.”
The show, three-and-a-half-hours, will be filled with a variety of material.
“We’ll be playing our own tunes, both the slow, the really fast and a lot of tempos in between, as well as plenty of cover songs folks will recognize and sing along to,” Stamm said. “We’ll play some songs by artists like Travis Tritt, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Eric Church, Garth Brooks, Tyler Childers, Alabama and maybe even an AC/DC song if the mood strikes us.
“Regardless of what we’re playing, my hope is that it will always deliver the right amount of energy for the occasion from a group of guys who are willing to be accessible and down to earth, both on and off the stage.”
Although Stamm has opened for acts such as Tritt, Blackberry Smoke, Jamey Johnson, Chris Knight, Reckless Kelly, the Kentucky Headhunters and others, his career happened by chance.
Stamm was born and raised in central Illinois, and his early life revolved primarily around football, earning a scholarship to play quarterback at Northern Illinois University. Injuries, however, cut his promising career short. Gradually, music and songwriting dominated his focus. Over time, a community of musicians and fans took notice and a band formed.
“My primary musical influence is and always has been Chris Knight,” Stamm said. “His songwriting has inspired me since before I ever wrote a song for mysel. But of course, the net of influences over the years casts out wider than one artist. There’s always the cliche, yet genuine, influences of folks like Creedence Clearwater Revival, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Waylon Jennings, Kris Kristofferson, et cetera.
“But there’s also the lesser known cats that I’ve always admired and played big roles in my early development as a musician such as Reckless Kelly, Pat Green and a lot of other folks who came up out of the Texas scene. Nowadays, I’m listening to a lot of Tyler Childers, Turnpike Troubadors, Blackberry Smoke and folks like that.”
And Stamm is looking forward to performing during the Herscher Labor Day celebration.
“I hope fans will walk away feeling like they made some new friends after the show,” he said. “I hope they’ve been able to listen to our lyrics and feel understood. I hope they’ll be able to watch us play music, but also feel involved in the show themselves. We’re out here trying to connect with folks. Music is our method of doing that.
“And I’m sure I’ll be hanging around at the merch table between sets to meet as many of the folks as possible, so I can walk away feeling like I made some new friends as well.”