First/Last-The Federal Hillbillies

January 20, 2014

“The Federal Hillbillies are an Americana band hailing from Baltimore, MD. Their unique blend of steel guitar, acoustic and harmonies provides a simple, yet moving and melodic listening experience. Influences from artists such as Ryan Adams, Gram Parsons, The Black Crowes, The Band and Jason Isbell can be heard in their sound. This combination of country, rock, folk, and blues distinguishes the band in a growing local music scene.”

Check out the band at their official Website, Facebook, SouncCloud and Twitter. The quartet formed in 2012 and recently released their debut EP, “Whiskey to Wine“. That’s some authentic roots music right there, folks. My thanks to Justin Ahmanson (Guitar/Vocals), Josh Ahmanson (Pedal Steel) and Chris King (Drums) for taking the time to participate in this edition of First/Last.

  • The first album you ever bought?
  • Justin Ahmanson: Green Day, “Dookie”.
  • Josh Ahmanson: “The Presidents of the United States of America”.
  • Chris Thomas King: Weezer “Blue Album” (self titled).
  • Your last album bought?
  • Justin: Van Morisson “Moondance” (somehow I didn’t have this).
  • Josh: Flatt and Scruggs “Foggy Mountain Gospel”.
  • Chris: The Dirty Guv’nahs “Youth Is In Our Blood” (picked it up when we opened for them at Rock & Roll Hotel).
  • Favorite album of all time?
  • Justin: Derek and the Dominos “Layla (and Other Assorted Love Songs)”. I got a hold of this from my dad’s collection when I began playing guitar. ‘Bell Bottom Blues’ was one of the first songs I ever learned. I constantly go back and listen to this album.
  • Josh: I don’t know. Let’s just go with “Allison Krauss and Union Station Live”.
  • Chris: Rolling Stones “Sticky Fingers”.
  • Least favorite/most disappointing album?
  • Justin: Captain Beefheart & The Magic Band “The Spotlight Kid/Clear Spot”.I have this because of an inside family joke, but I really can’t get into that album.
  • Josh: That Fuel album I bought.
  • Chris: Stone Temple Pilots “No. 4”. I traded a dude at school the Little Debbie Swiss Roll from my lunch bag for this one. I still regret that trade.
  • First concert attended?
  • Justin: Eric Clapton during the ‘One More Car, One More Rider Tour’ at the MCI (Verizon) Center. Blew my mind!
  • Josh: Eric Clapton.
  • Chris: Glen Campbell / Porter Wagner at the Grand Ole Opry with my family.
  • Last concert?
  • Justin: Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit at Baltimore Soundstage.
  • Josh: Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.
  • Chris: Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit at Baltimore Soundstage.
  • Favorite concert ever?
  • Justin: Black Crowes at 9:30 Club, September 18, 2006. First time I saw them live. Instantly became my favorite band (and still is). Completely changed my perspective on singing, songwriting, & and music in general.
  • Josh: Probably a Black Crowes concert.
  • Chris: The Black Crowes at 9:30 Club October 4, 2005. Rock and Roll Church.
  • Least favorite concert?
  • Justin: Afrojack at Mansion in Miami. Basically, I got dragged there by friends, payed a large amount of money for the ticket, waited in line for hours, and still didn’t get in because it was too crowded. Luckily alcohol saved the night!
  • Josh: Jimmy’s Chicken Shack (they opened for Live so technically not an entire concert). The sound was really bad.
  • Chris: Citizen Cope at 9:30 Club in 2007… don’t want to talk about it.
  • Any thoughts, experiences about Pittsburgh?
  • Justin: I should have drafted Antonio Brown this year in fantasy.
  • Josh: I’ve never been to Pittsburgh.
  • Chris: I was a member of the Ravens Marching Band’s Drum Line during their first Super Bowl run. We used to get heckled pretty fierce by Steelers Fans!
  • Thanks, fellas. Ravens fans, huh? Yeah, I am not too big on sports rivalries but I hate ‘dem dirty birds…