Dirty Money - CC Smugglers
Our next LCM featured artists the CC Smugglers, started off as a young rag-tag British six-piece busker band and are now becoming one of the most entertaining high energy live acts in the country. After wowing crowds at the recent Cambridge Folk Festival and dates around the UK the CC Smugglers will be in London on Saturday at the wonderful Union Chapel, supporting the rather excellent Keston Cobblers Club, so don't miss that one. They are also working on a new album via Pledge Music with loads of goodies on offer. Based in Bedfordshire the band are Richie Prynne (Lead vocals, Rhythm Guitar, Harmonica & Banjo), Ryan Thomas (Vocals, Lead Guitar, Dobro & Banjo), Sam Barret (Vocals, Rhythm Guitar & Fiddle), Dan Edwards (Vocals, Double Bass), Iain McFarlane (Vocals, Drums, Percussion) and Tom Seals (Vocals, Piano, Accordion). Our LCM #TrackOfTheDay is the very catchy 'Dirty Money'. Enjoy :)
“There are buskers that will make you cry, they’re so good”, according to cult Americana artist Andrew Bird. “And then there are buskers that will take you to a place where sound and energy merge to create a kind of spiritual ecstasy, a joyful affirmation of life itself.” CC Smugglers, who have made the transition from the street to the stage with consummate ease and considerable acclaim, exemplify the latter, and then some.
The band from Beds started out as “guerrilla buskers”, hijacking queues waiting to see other artists, or commandeering underground trains and escalators. They got their big break by playing outside every UK tour date of the two-time Grammy Award-winning Old Crow Medicine Show. Not even a severed artery on his finger could stop frontman Richie Prynne – he delayed surgery to lead the six-piece on the audacious escapade. So impressed were the Old Crow Medicine Show they invited them to share their platform on the remaining dates.
It was Richie who formed the band after busking alone for some years as a teenager. He enlisted the help of Dan Edwards (double bass) Ryan Thomas (lead guitar) and Sam Barrett (rhythm guitar and fiddle) who formed the Bedfordshire contingent of the band for several years. They were joined 18 months ago Joel Barford (drums) and more recently by Tom Seals (keys) both accomplished young jazz players “their influences have really allowed us to explore more contemporary challenging arrangements” said Richie.
Fast forward to now and CC Smugglers are selling out venues in their own right, and stealing the headlines at the Cambridge, Cornbury and Glastonbury Festivals.
They’ve also been playing further afield at some of Europe’s biggest festivals including sharing the bill with Bruce Springsteen at the prestigious Werchter Festival in Belgium followed by dates in The Netherlands, Germany, Czech Republic and more..
A rapid rise that has elicited critical plaudits from the Sunday Times culture Section, bluesman Seasick Steve, roots guru Bob Harris (“just brilliant”) and BBC 6 Music’s Cerys Matthews, who describes them as “the best live band on the scene at the moment”