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The Carpenter Ants

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Even the best bands come and go but the Carpenter Ants have been around - with virtually the same line up - for more than 16 years. The Ants have defied the odds and outlasted most of their peers for a number of reasons. First and foremost, regardless of the occasion, the band never fails to have a good time. And, after more than 2,000 performances, the members still like and respect each other - and you can feel it in their music. 

Having evolved into WV's premier rythm & blues group, the band has unearthed a wealth of classic and forgotten American music. The Ants wail through classic R&B, country-swamp and gospel-soul with equal conviction. A few years back, the band caught the ear of famed singer/songwriter/producer/rock'n'roller Don Dixon. The upshot was the band's second record, the all-gospel Picnic with the Lord. Last year Dixon anxiously signed on to produce the groups third effort, Ants in Your Pants, and steered the band to Scott Beal's Gaff Music. 

The core of the group consists of guitarist Michael Lipton, drummer Jupiter Little, bassist Ted Harrison and vocalist/saxophonist Charlie Tee. A revolving cast of auxillary Ants include singer/songwriter Larry Groce, host of the internationally syndicated radio show "Mountain Stage," ex-NRBQ guitarist Steve Ferguson and Robert Shafer, one of the Country's premier Telecaster slingers and two-time national flatpicking champion. 

The group's trademark sound -- rich, soulful harmonies, stinging solos, and a rock-solid rythm section -- captures that rare, loose-but-tight feel, and has won the band international as well as regional fans. The Ants have traveled to Moscow. The trips found the group performing at a variety of venues including the 3,500-seat Russia Concert Hall, the city's most prestigious room, a TV show with a national audience of 100 million(!!), funky clubs and gaudy venues. 

"Guest" Ants - sitting in for sets that ping-pong from rock 'n' roll and blues to country - have included Radney Foster, Bill Lloyd, Don Dixon, Rodney Crowell, Robyn Hitchcock, Taj Mahal, the late Luther Allison, English rock legend Kevin Coyne, Bill Kirchen, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Joe Ely, Howard Levy, ex-Replacement Slim Dunlap, Marshall Crenshaw, John Mooney, and Chip "Wild Thing" Taylor. 

This band isn't local to Cincinnati, as far as we know. If this isn't right, maybe you want to claim this band or submit a correction?

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