Welcome to a new effort we’re launching called The Load Out – a music podcast recorded monthly in St. Louis at the Gaslight music venue named for an old Jackson Brown song hosted by yours truly. In it, I’ll be speaking with emerging and established musicians and working to have more intimate conversations that allow listeners to better-understand the artists, their experiences and how those experiences shape their music and outlook.
We start with a guest who just might be one of my favorite country artists today, although you most likely won’t hear him on traditional radio. That’s because popular country music has dramatically evolved over the past half-century. It’s a format that was once dominated by a style altogether different then what you hear today on country radio stations – names like Merle Haggard, George Jones, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson and others. Today it’s more of a pop music platform and if there are heir apparents to outlaw country stars like Hank Williams, Jr., Jennings and David Allan Coe – it’s artists like Cody Jinks, Jamey Johnson and my first guest – Mickey Lamantia (pronounced Lu-man-tee-uh).
What makes Lamantia unique is not only is hearty baritone and songs reminiscent of the golden age of honky tonk country, but the fact that his day job is working as a prison guard in Rhode Island.
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So settle in and listen up to our first episode of The Load Out music podcast. I can promise you, Mickey Lamantia’s story will not disappoint.