Darcie Rickert & The Ruffnecks

Posted July 22, 2010 in Music


Darcie Rickert (vocals, guitar, banjo); Ruffneck Andy (guitar, vocals); Washboard Clay (washboard, bells, pie pan); Uncle Tubbs (drums).




Is There Any Other Kind? (Howling Hobo Recording Company, 2010).


Says Rickert, “We love bluegrass, rockabilly, early country and outlaw country.”



When you hear a band like Darcie Rickert & the Ruffnecks, replete in their throwback American musical ways, images of folks practicing with their acoustic guitars and harmonicas out on the porches of their homes are ridiculously easy to envision. Therefore, the story of how the band came to fruition sounds even more believable, not that we were ever doubting ’em in the first place.


“About a year-and-a-half ago, I was playing with a local harmonica player on my porch when a guy heard us and asked if he could play bass,” says Rickert. “And we then found two drummers and asked one to focus on washboard—which worked perfect. Then, lastly, we added our guitar player through an open mic. It all fell together pretty smooth.”


Well, pretty smooth for a bunch of Ruffnecks, that is. As Rickert tells us, “roughneck” is slang used for a hard labor job, most commonly associated with oilrigs. Yet, “I can’t say that we are that tough,” she says. “I did just seriously lose an arm wrestling competition at our show last week. But we wanted a name that referred to American roots. We changed the name to make it our own, from ‘Roughneck’ to ‘Ruffneck.’”


Performing their “mix of bluegrass-rockabilly with a dirty twist” throughout the Inland Empire, the act’s played a wide breadth of gigs, including burlesque shows, middle schools, Irish pubs and gay bars. (Rickert even got to sing while standing on top of a real stagecoach.) “There is never a dull moment, that’s for sure,” says Rickert. “We improvise a lot and get the audience involved.”


And soon, the audience will be able to take a piece of the exciting stage show home, as the Ruffnecks are readying a new live album, which was recently recorded at the Mill Creek Cattle Co. Expect greatness, as Rickert’s pretty focused on making each gig her best.


“I want the show to be fun and the music solid,” she says. “But what makes us so unique is how we work with the crowd to involve them and, in turn, work off their energy.”


Darcie Rickert and the Ruffnecks at the Mill Creek Cattle Co.’s Rockabilly Brunch, 1874 Mentone Blvd., Mentone, (909) 389-0706; www.millcreekcattlecompany.com. Sun, July 25. 2PM. $10.


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