When Tom Dunphy sings, it's like Buddy Holly, Bob Dylan and Greg Keelor all rolled into one guy who plays straight-up country like it was 1955 and he and his band, the Rizdales, are on the red-eye to Bakersfield to open for Buck. When Tara Dunphy harmonizes and gets the fiddle singing, it's clear the Rizdales are a honky-tonk force to be reckoned with. They play with a fast two-step beat that never lets up, and when they break into the Cash classic Folsom Prison Blues, guitarist Shawn Bragg does Luther Perkins almost as well as Perkins himself. There are no "down in the dumps" numbers here, just a collection of country stompers designed to get you up on the dance floor, where for a short while you can forget that your rent is due and you're flat broke.
The Rizdales get their twang on at Graffiti's Saturday (July 23).