Gumbo Ya-Ya: the rollicking Low Down Riders debut album

Olivia Watson
4th Nov 2018

I think the first time I saw the Low Down Riders was at well loved (and sorely missed) Glebe venue Mr Falcon's. It was a raucous affair, with happy crowds drinking, dancing and laughing away at this inspired and energetic local band in that cozy little venue that felt a little like being in a cool friend's living room. It was clear these musicians loved what they did and there would be an exciting musical road ahead of them 

The Low Down Riders are a five piece band who describe themselves as "inspired by the musical gumbo that is New Orleans street music". With loads of energy, toe-tapping beats, lively melodies and a solid dose of humour they regularly bring their party-starting tunes to venues around their home ground of Sydney's inner west.

Last month saw the launch of their debut album Gumbo Ya-Ya, and it is a fine reflection of the New Orleans style music that characterises a Low Down Riders gig.

There are 6 original numbers and 4 covers that have been given a LDR spin. Fans are likely to recognise the opening track "Low Down Riders" as well as "Willie the Boatman" and "St James Infirmary". 

I'm just a man looking for love in all the wrong places so it seems -

"Love is Just a Swipe Away" is a tongue in cheek tribute to dating apps and 21st century romance, no doubt relatable to their millennial Sydney audience and a good laugh.

"Stomping on my Heart" is an upbeat, cheeky take on a break up. None of that melodramatic break up ballad business, it's a rollicking, foot stomping affair with lines like:

but now you're gone, I'll find somebody new and she'll be so much better than you

This song leads nicely into the instrumental opening of "Silver Bangles" featuring the trumpet in particular which resurfaces after the first verse for an energetic solo section with the saxophone. This track is a great example of how the Low Down Riders showcase their instrumental talents that are always in there behind the vocals and the lighthearted lyrics.

It's a fun album and a good representation of what the Low Down Riders are all about. Go and catch them live too though - it's even better.

The Low Down Riders are:
Eamon Dilworth - Trumpet & Vocals 
Justin Fermino - Saxophones & Vocals 
Henry Manuell - Banjo & Vocals 
Phill Jenkins - Tuba 
Willem Van Ekert - Drums

You'll often find the Low Down Riders at inner west venues like The Gasoline Pony and The Temperance Society, plus a host of music festivals around Australia. You can buy their album Gumbo Ya-Ya on  their website which also has details of upcoming gigs.