BAND OF THE WEEK: Oak Hill Drifters

Oak Hill Drifters

Every week at Orlando Music News, the site highlights a local band. A good local band. This week, Oak Hill Drifters.

Oak Hill Drifters are celebrating the release of their new CD with a show at this month’s Southern Fried Sunday, which is going down at Wally’s (not Will’s), with plenty of outdoor celebrating, food, and liquor (!). Also playing: Christina Wagner and American Aquarium. 

Just the facts:

When formed:

Fall 2008

Band members’ names & instruments:

  • Tom Cooper rhythm guitar, steel guitar , lead vocal, songwriter
  • Gus Ramage-bull fiddle, vox
  • Ricky Melendy-electric guitar, vox
  • J.P.- trumpet, harp, vox
  • Daniel Anderson- drums, vox

Any band members currently/formerly in other projects?

Tom plays steel guitar for Summit church and is a member of the Painted Ladies. Gus and Ricky are both members of the Token Gamblers.  J.P. is leader of the Fat Idiot Project ska band, and Daniel Anderson is leader of the Anderson Gang.

Currently available releases:

CD will be out Oct. 16.

Upcoming Shows:

Oct. 16: Cd release show @ Southern Fried Sunday (Wallys)

Nov. 5: McRaney’s Tavern

Nov. 13: Uncle Lou’s


Describe your sound:

Primitive brothel rockabilly jazz/vintage hard country

Five Questions:

1) What has been your most memorable show so far?

Opening for the Wyios at the Plaza Theatre. Really got to see great old time steel player up close. Great band and venue.

2) Which local band is your favorite one to play a show with?

Giddy-up Go. Classic country plus great attitude. They are true ambassadors of  the classic sound.  There are many others we would like to do shows with also, just haven’t had the chance yet.

3) What description gets used for your band that you would most like to correct people on? Why?

Haven’t  really heard anyone get the description wrong yet, but Alt-Country is definitely not what we are doing. We try to put the old sound back in where they usually take it out. Americana isn’t really right either; too polished sounding. We are not that group.

4) What’s your favorite thing about being an Orlando band? What’s your least favorite?

Really starting to see a lot of vintage/roots type groups popping up and they are all really good. Great people to boot, which is just as important. Giddyup Go, Lonesome City Travelers, Mudflappers, Roadkill Ghost Choir. Really encouraging.  Also, the Virginia/Mills bars and the Audubon Park Garden District are really fun to play. Can have a great time without having to go downtown. Some even family-friendly. Looking forward to Harper’s opening.

Least favorite- so many things going on events sometimes happen on the same day or weekend. Wish there was some way to coordinate them but probably not possible. I guess that’s a good problem.

5) Any big news to share?

We have added a trumpet player and drums to get deeper into the Western Swing  and Jazz. Still going to keep the hard country stuff too.  CD will be out  Oct 16th.

3 responses to “BAND OF THE WEEK: Oak Hill Drifters

  1. Forgot to mention Anderson Gang and Silver Fleece in question #4. Really exited about them a lot.

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