Stomps Hills band members pause for a photo after performing at the Grand Ole Pumpkin Patch in Clanton last October.
Stomps Hills band members pause for a photo after performing at the Grand Ole Pumpkin Patch in Clanton last October. Pictured are (left to right) Kenny Nunn, Stephen Blackwell, Katrina Blackwell, John Sargent and Jay Morrison.

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Stomps Hills to perform before Lynryd Skynyrd concert July 12

Published 1:23pm Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Members of a local band named Stomps Hills are elated.

On Friday, July 12, Stomps Hills will perform on the Charter Communications Stage at Pelham’s Oak Mountain Amphitheater before a concert featuring Lynyrd Skynyrd and Corey Smith.

Stomps Hills member Stephen Blackwell said Live Nation contacted him July 5—just a week before the concert—confirming the band is approved to perform July 12.

Blackwell said Stomps Hills is the only “welcoming” band set to perform on the Charter Communications Stage, located just inside the main gate of the amphitheater, prior to the concert.

Gates open at 7 p.m., and Stomps Hills will perform between 7 and 8.

Blackwell said the band will also play a music set after the concert.

“We’re happy for this opportunity,” Blackwell said. “We’ve been in consideration for this for over a year, and we got lucky. Lynyrd Skynyrd is probably our biggest influence in our style of music.”

The band formed in 2008 and derives its name from Stomps Hills, an area located between Yellowleaf and Waxahatchee creeks, where members live and practice.

“After each very loud practice we would laugh and say, ‘We shook the leaves in Stomps Hills tonight,’” Blackwell said.

Members are Blackwell, guitar and vocals; his wife, Katrina Blackwell, harmonica, keyboard and vocals; Jay Morrison, guitar and vocals; John Sargent, bass and vocals; Kenny Nunn, drums; and Dale Worrall, sound and stage manager.

“We’re a true Southern rock band,” Blackwell said. “We’re a mix of rock and country but more on the rock side. Just good-time rock and roll music.”

Past band members include Dent Ellison, Ricky Hayes, Shane Jordan, Al Jordan, Beau Kendrick, Wendy Kendrick, Kenneth Kirkland, Jeff George, Marty Minor and Shane Minor.

“The music family goes deep,” Stephen Blackwell said. “Some are fill-ins. We went for a year and a half and couldn’t get a full-time bass player, but the music never quit.”

Stomps Hills has played at a range of venues from music clubs to outdoor festivals to private events.

Performances include Mayfest in Jemison, Grand Ole Pumpkin Patch in Clanton, Courtyard 280 in Birmingham, Big Star Tavern in Prattville, Ridersville Thunder Bike Rally in Plantersville and War of Rock at The Iron Horse Café in Hoover.

“Since I’ve joined Stomps Hills, my music career has progressed more than I ever thought possible,” Nunn said. “When we hit the Charter Communications stage at the Lynyrd Skynyrd concert, you can bet we are going to stomp the hills of Oak Mountain. Don’t miss it!”

Although they are still working on their set lists for Friday’s concert, Blackwell said in addition to some of their originals, Stomps Hills plans to play “Highway Song” by Blackfoot, “Try” by Pink, “Can’t You See” by Marshall Tucker, “Hotel California” by The Eagles, “Turn the Page” by Bob Seger and “Wild Nights” by John Mellencamp.

The band will release its first self-recorded CD, “In the Moonshine Light,” later this year.

Despite all members having full-time jobs, Blackwell said the band normally practices about 10 hours a week.

“We work very hard and we are very dedicated to what we do,” Morrison said. “We have become a very close family and plan to make bigger and better goals. If it wasn’t for everyone’s hard work, we wouldn’t be where we are today.”

Tickets range from $20–$75 each. To purchase tickets, go to Ticketmaster.com/event/20004AB4306C484A.

After Friday’s concert, Stomps Hills will perform Saturday along with musical acts Jessie Minor, Chris Ewing and Beyond the Fight at the grand opening of JT’s Sports Bar and Grill in the former Café Firenze location in Clanton.

For more information about Stomps Hills, visit Facebook.com/StompsHills or Reverbnation.com/StompsHills.

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