Jonathan Warren- vocals, guitar, upright bass
David Henry- vocals, cello, guitar
Steven Morningstar- banjo, guitar
What is Progressive Psychobilly Folk Grass?
It’s a goat chewing on a can, it’s a cat scratching at your door, it’s foot stompin’ music that makes you want to eat a biscuit. Melodies you wake up humming in the morning, and stick to your bones like peach cobbler.
It’s new-timey, post-retro, pre-apocolyptic, southern Appalachian, gypsy porch swing. It’s the Billy Goats. Enjoy!
The Goats Story
Between the delicate blades of grass, moist with the anticipation of the morning’s dew, tread the thoughtless hooves of an angry old goat weary from the night’s toils. The goat had wandered through a briar patch, searching for the juicy berries his friend, the farmers cat, had told him of. The goat did not find any such berries, only pain and entanglement from the sharp briars and finally emerged exhausted, bleeding and with a long stick hopelessly matted to his tail. Try as me might, he could not remove the stick and continued walking aimlessly through the night with the stick dragging behind him.
He lumbered along until he could bear his burden no longer and decided to rest under the shade of a tree, contemplating life and where he had gone wrong.
Not far from our weary hero, another hapless goat was struggling through the same briar patch, as he was tricked by the same conniving cat. The goat emerged from the briar patch in much the same fashion as the previous goat, exhausted and with his hair and tail matted with thorns. He also drug a stick behind him.
Around midday he came upon a goat resting beneath the tree. As he approached, he heard the goat sobbing.
“Brother goat, what troubles you?”
“ Oh, it is this stick that troubles me. That damned cat that belongs to the farmer tricked me into walking into the briar patch and I have been unable to untangle this stick from my tail since.”
“The second goat thought for a moment. “Well you see, it isn’t all that bad, for the same cat tricked me into the patch, and I have come out tangled in briars as well.” He turned to show how he also had a stick tangled in his tail. The first goat stopped crying, his remaining tear falling to the grass.
“So you too? We’ll what should we do, we must get these sticks out of our tails!”
The second goat thought for a moment. “It is simple, we will swing our tails against this oak tree until the sticks break and we are freed from our burdens.”
“Excellent idea brother goat let’s try it.”
And so the two goats began swinging their tails with all their strength against the trunk of the tree. They began swinging harder and harder, showering off bark in vain. They began to tire, and finally stopped, seeing that they had made no progress.
The first goat began to weep again, “How will we ever get these damned sticks from our tails?” At the word “tails” he beat the stick against the tree, making a solid “boom” sound. In his rage he continued beating his tail, feeling a little better for his efforts. He continued, striking the stick between his outbursts, “How” (boom) in the hell (boom) are we going to get (boom) these Goddamned (ba-boom) sticks off?”
As he continued his temper tantrum the second goat had an idea. He trotted off to a nearby fallen log, hollowed out by the seasons. With every off beat of the first goat, he struck his tail on the hollow log, making a cleaner “chick” sound. The tantrum continued and a song began. “Just how in the hell (boom) (chick), are we (boom) (chick) going to be (boom) (chick) FREE again?” (boom) (chick) The second goat thumped a few more times and the first goat, hearing the newly combined sounds, stopped.
“Wait, let’s try that again, I’ll beat first, then you.” The goats began to swing their tails, and their first song was written, (later entitled, "Boom, chick.”) Both the goats were elated, they had discovered music and their burdens were suddenly lifted. It was then and there they decided to form a band and travel the countryside to bring people the music of the “Boom Chick.”
The goats did extremely well for themselves and their fame spread quickly. Wherever they performed, they were always given plenty of leafy grasses, apples and soft hay to sleep on. Fate continued to show its’ good fortune on the goats for several months and they traveled the region sharing their music, and their first album, "Thwack, Thump." One night they were woken by a strange metallic scratching sound. There was a hound dog breathing heavily and staring intently at the goats. He was standing with his front paws on a wooden board covered in a metallic shingle. He was scratching his claws in a rhythmic pattern. Both goats began to panic.
“It’s okay goats, I came to join the band, listen.” He continued to scratch and the goats became less alarmed and more intrigued. The first goat stopped him, “Listen hound dog, we already have a band and we are doing just fine, just look at this hay we’re sleeping on.”
“I know, but I need to join the band. I have run away from the farmer and stolen this washboard, his cat’s favorite scratch toy. I have nowhere to go. God I hate that cat.”
The first goat was still wary.
The hound spoke again. “Okay goat, I’ll prove it, just play "Thwack Thump”
So the goats began to swing their tails and the dog began to scratch. The sounds turned into flawless music, and the goats began to giggle and grin. They had found their soloist, and the rest is history.