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The Spikedrivers


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The Spikedrivers began in late 2003 when Jesse Henry and Steven Fox met at an underground musician’s showcase in Columbus, Ohio. Both were recent recipients of undergraduate degrees in music and had been similarly trained in the arts of jazz and classical music. The thread that ultimately sewed the two together, though, was an intense passion for American roots music. Fox and Henry both believed that Columbus needed the idea that was the Spikedrivers.

Over the next year, the Spikedrivers played the Columbus scene with enough success to gain a sizeable fan base and the attention of some other prominent musicians in the area. Those musicians included Megan Palmer, Steve Sweney, Paul Brown and Nathan Anders, all of whom ultimately joined forces with Fox and Henry to form the all-star sextet that is the Spikedrivers today.

Megan Palmer is a force in the American Indie scene in her own right. She has accompanied the likes of Tim Easton in opening for Lucinda Williams, played with Luther Wright and the Wrongs, sat with Rick Moranis for CMT’s Studio 330 Sessions, and played with Sarah Harmer. On her own album, Palmer collaborated with the likes of Happy Chichester (Howlin’ Maggie) and Derek DiCenzo among others.

Together, guitarists Steve Sweney and Paul Brown bring a great deal of experience, critical acclaim, and raving fans. Sweney is well known regionally not only for his work with The Spikedrivers, but also as the lead guitarist for jam-band heavyweights Ekoostik Hookah. Brown has a significant following and is widely recognized as one of the best underground guitarists in the nation. Most notably, Brown was dubbed "Best Unsigned Guitarist" by Guitar Magazine in 1990 and 1993.

Nathan Anders is best known as a classically trained jazz vibraphonist turned country drummer. Beyond his work with the Spikedrivers, Anders is on faculty at Capital University in the Department of Music Education, specializing in percussion methods.

Throughout 2005, the Spikedrivers picked up plenty of steam. The outfit established themselves in Columbus, amassed a cult following in the hundreds, reached a level of considerable popularity throughout Ohio, and began to branch out into the Midwest. The band’s ambitions were met with great success, leading to the 2006 release of their studio debut, The Spikedrivers, which was produced by Grammy award winner Jeff Ciampa. The album features the band’s most popular down-and-dirty originals, melding an industrial soundscape with old-time country, swingin’ blues, and good ole rock ‘n’ roll.

In recent months, the Spikedrivers have been hard at work writing new material and touring fiercely to promote their debut in the Midwest and on the East Coast, recording live performances all along the way. The band considers its greatest successes to be the ability to appeal to a diverse audience and maintaining the addictive equalities that continually make show-goers want to come back for more. And they genuinely enjoy making people happy with their music.