Returning to Rose Center’s Prater Hall stage are local folk rockers Chris Durman, Pat Helms, and Steve White.
They will be joined on stage by Knoxville’s Leslie Gengozian and Andy Wood. Together they are the members of the long-running, much-beloved band, Exit 65.
According to top fan, Perlina Hoodinpile, the origins of this stalwart band goes like this, “The origin story for Exit 65 is one of a happy accident. Long-time Morristown, TN friends, Pat Helms, David Hagwood, and Chris Durman were having a back porch all-guitar jam session in Knoxville where they were attending UT. At one point, a friend came by, sat around and listened, and invited them to play (right then) for free beer at a little bar named Geronimo’s that sat in the back corner of Knoxville’s Fort Sanders neighborhood.”
That auspicious beginning was nearly three decades ago.
It is my understanding that while things have changed significantly thirty-six years, some things have stayed true to their roots—namely, and despite their success, they will still play on occasion for free beer.
And, the enduring friendships have valiantly withstood the ravages of time, moves, and career changes. Another thing that remains true to their roots is the great jam-band style with which they play.
The tunes they choose still reflect those first important influences like The Band, The Byrds, and Richard Thompson. And, just like a good whiskey, the band has only improved with age, experience, and confidence.
So, what can you expect from an Exit 65 show, besides a whole lot of Indie-beer and the slew of local fans? First and foremost, an Exit 65 show comes complete with great vibes. Maybe it is all the free shows, the hippie mentors, the influence of their early heroes, namely the Grateful Dead, or maybe it is all that good beer, but one thing folks can count on is the general atmosphere of warmth and kindness found in both the band and their family of fans.
You can also count on hearing some great folk rock covers from icons like Bob Dylan, Neil Young, and Jerry Garcia. Plus, Exit 65 fans will want a heavy dose of time-tested originals, too.
The current lineup includes Pat Helms on electric guitar, Steve White on electric guitar and mandolin, Andy Wood on drums, Chris Durman on electric bass, and Leslie Gengozian on violin.
All the members in Exit 65 take turns on vocals, except for Andy. However, we heard a rumor that he did in fact sing one at a show over the summer. We hope he does that for us—what a treat!
According to front man, Chris Durman, Exit 65 has been hard at work on a new studio album, and doing lot of responsible and upstanding things.
Exit 65 will play Rose Center’s Prater Hall on November 29th at 7 PM. Doors open at 6:30 PM, and guests are permitted to bring snacks and the beverages of their choice.