It's the year of the Hogjaw as southern rockers head to Preston's Continental

Southern American hard rockers Hogjaw
Southern American hard rockers Hogjaw

Rowdy Southern rockers Hogjaw are heading to these shores for their first ever UK tour, and lead beardsmith JB Jones says they are coming to party and drink with new friends.

He said: "Expect a party. We make sure that everyone has a good time. We like to play loud and we like to be rowdy. We like to have drinks with our new friends.

"We don't really have any expectations. The only expectation that we would say of the people who come to show - be ready to have a good time. And it's loud. We get told to turn it down too much!"

Hogjaw hail from Arizona and describe themselves as "Four fingers folded into a fist!" And "Hard-hitting southern fried electric rock" is how they define their sound, although their influences are drawn from a deeper well: imagine Free, early Rainbow and Whitesnake, marinaded in Blackfoot and The Allman Brothers, then steeped in moonshine.

JB leads the way on vocals and guitar, with Jimmy Rose on lead guitar, Elvis DD on bass and Kwall on drums.

The band as a unit go back to high school in the 1980s, so they are more than comfortable making music together.

Hogjaw are playing at Preston's Continental

Hogjaw are playing at Preston's Continental

JB explained: "Most of us in the band we go back to high school days in the late 80s, and in 2006 we got back together. The bass player Elvis and the drummer Kwall had played music in bands throughout the 90s. But I had 'gone fishin' I guess you could say.

"I started working and didn't do a lot of band stuff until probably in the early 2000s, when I started getting back into the music thing myself.

"And we ended up meeting up, kinda getting all our friends back together and we decided to start playing music on the weekends, you know like having a jam session or a barbecue. We started jamming and I had written material and they had ideas on how to take that and stick it together in more of a band process I guess you could say. And the next thing you know we were doing more and more barbecues. And more and more songs were getting written and we just decided to go ahead and make a demo record and start a band. And that was about late 2006."

But how they ended up with a singer was another story in itself. JB went on: "We were looking for a singer, and I had never sung. I was more of a guitar player, I had never tried singing or anything like that.

"But we were writing lyrics and we had these vocal melodies going on. We were looking for a singer and I was showing them how to sing them. And they were like: 'Why are we even looking for a singer when you can do it man?'

"I was like, 'What? Are you kidding me? I don't want to do that.' But kinda one thing leads to another I guess and they talked me into it. And there we are."

And how do this hard-hitting southern fried electric rock come about?

"I would like to think that we approach it from a classic rock standpoint where we have the two guitars that play lead and harmonies together. And then we have a solid rhythm section in the drums. But we do have three members of the band who are singing and doing harmonising as well. So we're trying to get more vocal melodies going on - we definitely were on the last record - and we want keep that going.

"It's not like we are The Eagles or anything, but we're working on it!" laughs JB.

You can catch Hogjaw at The Continental in Preston on Friday, October 12. Doors open 8pm and tickets are £10 in advance or £12 on the door. Support on the night comes from Blackballed.

If you miss them then, or want to cram in as much Hogjaw as you can whilst they are over here, they are also playing at Waterloo Music Bar in Blackpool on Sunday, October 14. Support on the night for this gig is Soldato.

For more information visit http://hogjawmusic.com/