Released in 1971, the Hampton Grease Band’s Music to Eat is a minor masterpiece of Southern freak-blues. At the time, however, it acquired a probably untrue reputation as Columbia Records’ worst selling album (next to a Maharishi Mahesh Yogi yoga instructional record). The Hampton Grease Band was fronted by Col. Bruce Hampton, who went on to lead The Late Bronze Age, the Aquarium Rescue Unit, the Fiji Mariners, the Codetalkers, and, most recently, Col. Bruce and the Quark Alliance.
I once had the pleasure of playing blackjack beside Col. Bruce during a Jamcruise. He was betting according to a complicated system I can no longer recall while spinning yarn after yarn. I don’t recall if the subject of food arose, but now you can read all about Col. Bruce’s culinary preferences at Epicurean Musician, a blog concept so great it’s hard to believe it took this long for someone to get it on the table.
So where does the Colonel like to eat when he’s on the road?
“Cooking on the road never happens, so we tend to eat out frequently. The current crew tends to stick with Arby’s, Chik-Fil-A, and the beloved Ruby Tuesdays.” Col. Bruce appreciates the salad bar at Ruby’s and claims that it is always fresh and consistent. “It is also hard to beat a meal at Cracker Barrel” claims Bruce. When rolling through Alabama Col. Bruce is certain to make stops at Dell’s Den in Valley, and the Fish Market Restaurant in Gadsden. If you find yourself on I-5 in Oregon, get of at exit 22 and check out Heavenly Heights. When in New Orleans, Bruce highly recommends Jacquesimos Cafe.
Yonder Mountain String Band’s Jeff Austin, Guster’s Ryan Miller, Lez Zeppelin’s Steph Paynes, Betty Lavette, and Stephen Kellogg have also talked chop with Epicurean Musician recently.
(Severely cropped photo by Brato Ganibe)