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5 Questions with The Hobohemians

POSTED: December 29, 2011 1:30 a.m.
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Downtown Dahlonega will be ringing in the New Year, "Hobohemian"-style.

The North Georgia-based ensemble will headline a New Year’s Eve bash near the town’s downtown square beginning at 9 p.m. Saturday. Tickets for the show are $17 in advance, or $20 on the day of the concert.

The group is composed of professional musicians and vocalists who "have been involved in 24 different bands over the last 40 years and summarily play a combination of 15 different instruments. You can sample their tunes at www.thehobohemians.com.

The Times caught up with Antoon Speters, the band’s lead guitarist and a vocalist, to learn more about the group’s unique sound and performances:

How did you all come up with the band name?

The term "Hobohemian" denotes a unique form of Americanized, vagabond-style bohemianism which guides the group’s approach towards popular American and European roots music of the 1910s, 20s, and 30s — a potent mix of proto-jazz, blues, and folk.

Most of you are from the North Georgia region, how did you end up forming a band?

(We) have known each other from various bands and decided to come together to play a music style (we) all loved, but was sorely missing in today’s music scene. (We) play music that emanates from country roads to the juke joints and cities of America plus (our) own compositions.

What most influences the hobo-style of music you play?

(We) like to draw from a broad selection of Americana — from Blind Willie McTell and Uncle Dave to Cab Calloway and Jonathan Byrd — and give their songs a Hobo twist.

Is this New Year’s gig going to also be the start of anything new for the group like a tour?

Since (we) are a relatively new group, (we) will be working on (our) first CD in the coming months.

Any resolutions for the New Year ahead?

(Our) resolution for the New Year would be not to be in any cooperate contest like ‘Americas Got Talent,’ but instead to take our music directly to the people in a relaxed and personal environment.



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