Decades ago, before the first rock and roll idols turned music into a product, musicians played music the way cobblers mended shoes and carpenters built homes. It was a trade-like any other job, and men did it for work, for wage. Young men packed their station wagons with gear and traveled from city to city to play their songs. For these musicians, it was not only all they wanted to do but all they could do. They were not in search of fame or fortune; it was simply a life in music. Welcome to the world of Aaron Williams and the Hoodoo.
Since their beginning as a trio in 2008, the world of Aaron Williams and the Hoodoo has drastically changed. Riding on the success of their debut CD “It Ain’t Easy,” the band is topping all expectations with its sophomore release, “10:49.” The band’s debut “It Ain’t Easy” brought many awards, including Blues/Rock Album of the Year, as named by Real Blues magazine. The band was nominated for Blues Artist of the Year by the Wisconsin Area Music Industry and six Madison Area Music Awards, walking away with five: Blues Artist of the Year, Blues Song of the Year (“Drinking Blues”), Blues Album of the Year, Instrumentalist of the Year (Erick Shackelford—drums), and the highly coveted Artist of the Year. Continuing their forward surge, without a new CD under their belt, the band took Blues Artist of the Year at the MAMAs and received their second WAMI nomination for Blues Artist of the Year in 2011. To date, “10:49” has earned the band two second-round Grammy nominations and a selection as one of the Top 10 Albums of 2011 by The Isthmus. 2012 promises even more for these talented young bluesmen.
The band’s new CD “10:49” is already breaking the band out on a new level. “10:49” has been hitting the airwaves across the nation, charting at #44 on release week and holding steady in the Top 5 Wisconsin roots albums (with several weeks at #1). The title cut was inspired by Aaron’s father, late bluesman “Cadillac” Joe Andersen and sets the tone for the CD. Heavy on roots rock and “Hoodoo blues,” “10:49” will propel Aaron Williams and the Hoodoo even farther in their career. The lead vocals of guitar slinger Aaron Williams on “10:49” prove that the band continues to evolve into a national caliber touring band. Eric Shackelford on drums and Z on bass and hand percussion provide the rhythm section that helps to create the hypnotic, pulsing grooves for which this band is rapidly becoming known. These three young men have a real love for what they do, and it shows in the songs they write and perform. As declared by the Toledo City Paper, “. . . this isn’t your grandpa’s blues act.” Aptly coined “blues and roll” by “Ole Harv” of (NPR) WVPE 88.1, Aaron Williams and the Hoodoo’s sound is set to capture a new generation of blues lovers by storm.
Aaron Williams and the Hoodoo is comprised of Aaron Williams (lead vocals/guitars), Z (backing vocals/bass), and Eric “Shack” Shackelford (backing vocals/drums/percussion).