No tricks but a treat seeing The Long Ryders

Posted On 02 Nov 2019 at 4:31 pm

Sid Griffin from The Long Ryders live at The Hassocks 31.10.19 (pic Guy Ramone)


So…Maz and I hopped into the wheels for a trip up country to see The Long Ryders, who were playing at The Hassocks, located in Station Approach East opposite the railway station in…Hassocks…and I have to say the venue was perfect, with a rammed full room of people ready for a good time.

History lesson first…The Long Ryders were and are the founders of Alt-country, a musical genre which did not exist before they burned so brightly in the eighties, and are a key link in the Americana chain, uniting Gram Parsons’ Flying Burrito Bros with Wilco and the Jayhawks.

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Principally active between 1983 and 1987, but have reformed on and off and have toured sporadically ever since. 2019 saw them release their first new studio album in over 30 years, the rather groovy Psychedelic Country Soul.

And fortunately for us in “Brighton” the Long Ryders have saddled up again…

The Long Ryders live at The Hassocks 31.10.19 (pic Guy Ramone)

Although without their erstwhile drummer Greg Sowders, this time, Sid, Tom, Stephen and drummer Simon Hancock, provided a set laced with gems ranging from ‘Native Sons’, to the new LP, starting with at a sprint with ‘Gunslinger Man’. Then it was straight into ‘You Don’t Know’, ‘A Stitch In Time’, and the soaring ‘What The Eagle Sees’, and ‘Gonna Make It Real’, from the new LP. Then whirring back tardis like to ‘State Of My Union’ and ‘I Want You Bad’.

Swiftly followed by ‘Molly Somebody’, ‘Ivory Tower’ and ‘Walls’. The garage rock took a slower turn for ‘I Had A Dream’, but rapidly kicked off again with a stirring version of ‘Final Wild Son’. Then it was into ‘Greenville’ and ‘You Just Can’t Ride The Boxcars…Anymore’.

The Long Ryders live at The Hassocks 31.10.19 (pic Guy Ramone)

Before you knew it, we were, rather loudly shouting for an encore…‘Psychedelic Country Soul’ and a romping ‘Looking For Lewis And Clark’ did not disappoint.

It’s a shame that the band look like being quiet next year…let’s hope they take some RnR, and are ready to come back in 2021 refreshed and ready to ryde again.

The Long Ryders tonight were Sid Griffin (vocals, guitar, harmonica, autoharp), Stephen McCarthy (vocals, main guitar, banjo, mandolin, lap steel), Tom Stevens (vocals, bass, acoustic bass) and Simon Hancock (drums, percussion).

More information on The Long Ryders can be found at

Tour flyer

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