The Oakland Potwashers

The Oakland Potwashers originated with the words of Austin poet Roy Ruth, who wrote an autobiographical collection of poetry about a motorcycle journey entitled “Buffalo Thoughts”. To really drive the story home, Ruth commissioned a couple of bands to turn the story into five chapters, each of which will be released as an LP on Ruth’s website May 1. For the chapter on his time as a pot washer in Yosemite, Night Man in a Winter Valley, he had Oakland’s Winston Goertz-Giffen put together a talented band of East Bay musicians to help him out. The Oakland version of the Potwashers features Ryan Christoper Parks (B. Hamilton), Andrew Macy (B. Hamilton), Raj Ojha (B. Hamilton, Once and Future Band, Howlin’ Rain), Joel Robinow (Once and Future Band, Howlin’ Rain), and the aforementioned Winston Goertz-Giffen (Saything), who is also in an Austin-based band commissioned by Ruth. The band collaborated to write accompaniment for the music and sang any words that needed to be sung, while Ruth himself handles some spoken-word vocals. The band recorded the 21 track album last summer at 25th Street with Scott Bergstrom, and it really deserves your time for a deep listen before planning a camping trip. The juxtaposition between the hard edge of Ruth’s deep, gravelly voice with the lonely sadness evoked by Hamilton’s vocals make it a great emotional ride.

The Potwashers are all getting together this Friday night to celebrate the release of the album and play some songs at SANTO Recording in Oakland. Eight Belles and Levi Thomas also perform.

The Oakland Potwashers, Eight Belles, Levi Thomas
SANTO Recording
April 24, 2016
8pm, Admission TBD (Just bring some cash)