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Monday, May 15, 2017
New Record Release by @hahatonka (Ozark, MO) w/ live support by @trapperschoepp (WI) on 5/19 @offbroadwaystl
This Friday at Off Broadway comes an event that is surely a big day for Ha Ha Tonka. It is their Record Release show with Trapper Schoepp (Milwaukee, WI.) touring in support of the Ozark, MO. rock, folk, Americana style band that is Ha Ha Tonka. Visit HERE for more details on the show or to RSVP on Facebook. Here is the story behind Ha Ha Tonka as posted on their fan page:
Over their history, Ha Ha Tonka has recorded four critically acclaimed albums, toured the world, played Lollapalooza and Austin City Limits, and appeared on Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations. Through it all, these Ozarks natives have made friends, found love, started familes, and grown and matured together. Heart-Shaped Mountain is a reflection of that development and maturity. Once aptly summed as "Indie-Americana, where Alabama meets Arcade Fire, " Ha Ha Tonka has expanded their sonic palette, unveiling balanced, sublime, pop radio accessible heights and an emotionally broader, post-punk songwriting range, a la Apache Relay or a less enigmatic Jonsi, while keeping their trademark harmonizing vocals, jangly Southern revelry and crunchy hooks fully in tact. At it's core, Heart-Shaped Mountain is an album about love and growth. At a time when divisiveness fills the headlines, Ha Ha Tonka is fighting the good fight, building narrative-tributes to friends and loved ones, memories past and prospects of the future.
London based independent label Xtra Mile Recordings (Frank Turner, Against Me!), in partnership with Kay Bank Recording, and Milwaukee-based singer-songwriter Trapper Schoepp are pleased to announce the Friday, June 2 release of Bay Beach Amusement Park (pre-order at iTunes, Xtra Mile), a six-song concept EP centered around the 125-year-old attraction located in Green Bay, WI on the shores of Lake Michigan. Produced by 18-year-old Minnesotan Eliot Skinner and recorded mostly live over a weekend at Pachyderm Studios, Bay Beach Amusement Park serves as Schoepp’s creative and wildly fun follow-up to Rangers & Valentines, an album Relix declared a “mini masterpiece” and named one of Billboard’s “Best of the Week.”
Perhaps the park’s most historic and notable attraction is The Zippin Pippin, a wooden rollercoaster known famously as Elvis Presley’s favorite ride. The King rented Libertyland on August 8, 1977 from 1:15 a.m. until 7 a.m. to entertain a group of guests. Decked in a blue jumpsuit with a black leather belt, huge belt buckle with turquoise studs and gold chains, the King rode the Pippin repeatedly during a two-hour period. Presley’s late night joyride was his last public appearance. He passed away eight days later.
40 years on, Schoepp celebrates the Pippin and the other classic rides with these six songs that take the listener on six different adventures, each song named for its respective ride (“Zippin Pippin,” “Bumper Cars,” “The Scat”). This musical joyride is suitable entertainment for both adults and children. “Come mothers, daughters, fathers and sons/You’ll feel a lot better after you’re done,” Schoepp sings in the first single “Bumper Cars,” where pop culture rivalries such as Jerry Seinfeld and Newman and the Jedi and Sith collide on the ride. Check out the music video for “Bumper Cars” HERE.
Additionally, Schoepp recently recorded “On, Wisconsin,” a hat-tip to both his beloved home state as well as his appreciation for Bob Dylan. Recorded for “Milwaukee Day,” “On, Wisconsin” uses the lyrics taken from a 1961 set of unpublished verses from the legendary songwriter that also incorporates mentions milk, cheese and the Dairy State, along with the state's slogan, "On Wisconsin.” Schoepp created a “mash up” by writing the music around the lyrics that were scrawled onto a piece of notebook paper by a then 20-year-old Dylan. Check out “On, Wisconsin” streaming over at SoundCloud HERE.
“My first ride was a total thrill. I got right back in line wanting to set lyrics to the rhythm of the roller coaster,” Trapper says of his first time riding The Zippin Pippin. “It reminded me of the innocence of childhood and the great escape a ride can give you.” After writing his ode to the famous ride, Schoepp listened in on kids’ humorous conversations at the park. Some utterances, hastily transcribed as iPhone notes, appear verbatim in songs. The jazziest tune on the album, “The Scat,” takes lines from a boy exclaiming a nightmarish experience on the spinning gravitron ride: “I feel weird, I feel numb, I wish that this would end,” he sings.
The lyrics merge the exciting, romantic, and surreal aspects Schoepp attributes to the park. “Ferris Wheel” is a story song of two brothers whose wildest wish comes true. After screaming “we wish this never ends” in unison, the ferris wheel becomes an anthropomorphic, unstoppable ride – despite the best efforts of the FBI and the brothers’ meddling mother to shut it down. “Tilt-A-Whirl” is about a high school senior’s crush on the ride’s operator, who’s spending her last summer in Green Bay before college.
While the scope of the six songs is specific, Trapper notes that the entertainment value amusement parks offer is universal. “In a world of derivatives, Bay Beach is an original,” Trapper says. “It’s a happy place for me to return to in song and in real life.”
Schoepp – who has already crisscrossed the country sharing stages with The Wallflowers, The Jayhawks and Old 97’s – will be back on the road throughout 2017 in support of Bay Beach Amusement Park, starting with a three-week run throughout the U.S. supporting Ha Ha Tonka. Visit HERE for places to hear Trapper Schoepp's music and purchase it.