Derek Hoke left rock and roll in the dust years ago, finding a new sound, which he dubbed "Quietbilly," a gentle, sweet rockabilly, now twinged with some Southern blues. His previous album, Goodbye Rock and Roll, clearly cemented Hoke's distinguishable sound, but his recent release, Waiting All Night, explores a wider variety of rhythm, while still being a Derek Hoke record. Producer and childhood friend, Dexter Green (of Sea Lab Sound), partnered with Hoke on the project, taking their time to call upon friends to play on songs between their own touring schedules.
The list of guests reads like a Who's Who of East Nashville and legendary sidemen, and reflects on Derek's ability to make his peers feel at ease. Derek Hoke honed this natural skill to such a degree that he hosts a weekly curated evening at the local bar, encouraging emerging and known writers to try their newest material out for their fellow songwriters rather than play familiar songs from their touring set lists. Hoke himself is not afraid to test all-new material on a larger scale, either. He played a popular live-music event called Music City Roots prior to releasing Waiting All Night, yet played five brand new tunes to a packed house who had never heard these songs before, a gamble that had the audience enamored.
Whether introducing the country side project of a psychedelic rock band, or letting Jason Isbell or Peter Buck slide on stage unannounced to play a few songs, Derek Hoke holds court quietly and with a little smile. Waiting All Night shares the same pleasant, comfortable, easy demeanor, with changes so subtle you may have to ask yourself afterwards if they happened the way you thought they did after all! Hoke's songs will likely make you want to dance, although this time it's not just two-stepping.
An expanded version of this post appeared previously on http://countryfriedrock.org/1231-derek-hoke/. Check there for the full playlist, listen to the entire radio show, and download the podcast. You may also subscribe to the podcast on iTunes. http://itunes.com/podcast?id=514632725/