CHATTANOOGA, TN (WDEF-TV)- Chattanooga is home to some outstanding musicians and entertainers.
Most of them are just under the "music radar ", but local and regional fans know who they are.
Tonight, an unhurried look at one of those groups---Lou Wamp and his band "Bluetastic Fangrass ".
A music critic says "Lou Wamp's slide rules! Wamp is an exceptional resonator guitarist with his own unique new acoustic flair. "
Resonator guitar, dobro---whatever you want to call it, Lou Wamp mastered it years ago, even before he worked in other local bands.
LOU WAMP "I played with the Dismembered Tennesseans for about 20 years, on and off with other bands. Fletcher and I..I left their band in 2002 ..and in the last 10 years we've had two bands.. BLUE-TASTIC FANGRASS, The bluegrass band that's playing tonight ...And also we have a western swing group."
The band performed at the latest Scenic City Roots show. Two members had not arrived for the mid-afternoon sound check, but that didn't interfere with a dazzling display of talent from Wamp, his bass-playing wife and partner, Lynn, and banjo impressario Jim Pankey.
Lynn is one of the best bass players around, male or female.
LYNN WAMP, BASS "Its just a matter of being lucky enough to be in a band with no only people you know and love, but people you can along with and work with, and blend with, and do well with. And give you the respect of a full-fledged musician. That's right....not just for a girl."
Outside of music, the Wamps have another life. He is an architect, she is a registered nurse.
Jim Pankey, meanwhile, is a full-time musician.
JIM PANKEY, BANJO "I see a lot of musicians here that are just great. You know, I tell friends from all over that you can be right here in Chattanooga and hear the best music ever from people you never heard of...that's pretty much the truth."
Is it bluegrass, yep---but the Wamp band also plays jazz, country, swing, contemporary and just about any other genre that can be adapted to fiddle, banjo, bass...and of course, resonator guitar. They play 40 to 50 gigs a year.
Now---about that name?
LOU WAMP "The youngest member of the band came up with the name...he's 27 and it was Fantastic Bluegrass, inverted..so its "Bluetastic Fangrass"..its too complicated."
Lou has two C-D's available from I-tunes..or from the band's website---Lou Wamp-dot-com.