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Photo by Jimi Giannatti

HONKYTONK COUNTRYBLUES

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Based in Tucson, AZ, singer / songwriter Hank Topless has shared stages with and / or provided support for: Les Paul, Junior Brown, Kinky Friedman, Joe Ely, The Outlaws, Pete Anderson, Al Perry, Skip Heller, Robbie Fulks, Jim Goad, Tom Walbank, Jim Bachmann, Scott Biram, Jesse Dayton, Split Livers, Al Foul, Gary Stockdale, Whitney Rose, Kevin Daly, Reverend Payton’s Big Damn Band, Calexico, and many more. Finalist in multiple iterations of yearly “Best Of Tucson,” in the country music category.

Growing up on a ranch in central Arizona, there was a lot of country music on the radio. This took awhile to sink in. After quite a few years banging around with obscenely ridiculous underground extreme rock ‘n roll / noise, Topless “went country” around 1990. He masterminded the essentially invisible  “all-star” Tucson underground-country group Topless Opry (2000-2004)- their never-to-be-remembered album “No Phoenix Blues” (2002) achieved minimal notoriety / radio play, based on the merits of its bold, honkytonk-style cover of Lou Reed’s “All Tomorrow’s Parties.” Hank’s more recent solo albums “It’s So December” (2011) and “Big Black Heart” (2017) have received critical, if minimal, acclaim.

New studio set  “Songs I Hate To Sing” (co-produced by Jim Waters, and featuring a crack team of studio players),  and “Hank Me Crank Me I’m Dead” (live solo 2018) were digitally released in October, 2019. Complete discography available for digital download/ streaming. Links below. 

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Albums

Songs I Hate To Sing (2019)

Stream the full album.
Homage to 1960’s hard / psycho country. Tracks 2,7,9 by Hank Topless. Remaining tracks originally rendered by other artists. “-a beautifully rendered collection of studio tracks and a brilliant nod to Topless’ country forbears”- Julie Jennings Patterson, Tucson Sentinel, October 2019. Learn more and download the full album here.

Hank Me Crank Me I'm Dead (2018)

Stream the full album.
Voice and guitar. Recorded live at Owls Club, Tucson, Arizona, May 2018. Download the full album here.

Big Black Heart (2017)

Stream the full album.

“Hank Topless’ current album is a brilliant summation of American roots music…”- Joshua Levine, Tucson Weekly

Download the full album here.

Skeleton's Blues 7" (2012)

Stream the single.

Hank Topless Skeleton’s Blues 7″ vinyl with b-side track “Take Their Time”. Recorded at Tarantula Tucson 2012.

Download the track (from Bandcamp) here.

If you’d like to order the 7” vinyl click here (secure PayPal).
$13 including shipping.

Take Their Time (2012)

Stream the single.

Vocal and guitar. Originally released on vinyl, December 2012.

Download the track (from Bandcamp) here.

It’s So December (2011)

Stream the full album.

“…a stunning debut disc from a singer who should have been doing this decades ago…I’d be very surprised if this isn’t one of my CD’s of the year.” – Paul Riley, Country Music People

Buy the CD (from CDBaby) here.
Download the full album (from Bandcamp) here.

STYLE and INFLUENCES

WHAT?: Sad songs, bad songs, death songs, love songs, get-lost songs, come-back songs, weird songs- he sings them all. In addition to bars, festivals, clubs, theaters, cafes, and restaurants, he works weddings / funerals / memorials / parties. Special playlists tailored for your event.

WHY? Topless does lots of covers in addition to his own stuff: old honkytonk and hard country (Ernest Tubb, George Jones, Hank Thompson, Ray Price, Conway Twitty), old country blues (Reverend Gary Davis, Mississippi John Hurt, Blind Lemon Jefferson, Charley Patton), 60’s / ’70’s pop songs (Leon Russell, Fleetwood Mac, Doors, Beatles, Dylan),and outlaw country (Waylon Jennings, Jerry Lee Lewis, Willie Nelson)- so, you’ll hear a sort of mashup of these styles, with something broken thrown in.

HANK TOPLESS BAND: full-service hardcore electric honkytonk countryblues featuring either J Claymore Koweek (Loveland, Kevin Pakulis) Damon Barnaby (Rich Hopkins, Amy Munoz, Muffeletas, Mark Insley, Loveland), Loren Dircks (Gila Bend, Eric Schaffer, Van Christian, Texas Trash) on guitar. Current rhythm section is Brian Green on bass and Dani Ponce on drums. Hire this band. We’ll split your audience up into little pieces, whomever happens to be in the lineup that night! 🤪 Because we can.

BARELY ALIVE

Upcoming performances

Hank Topless  

Date City Venue Country
12/14/19 Oro Valley, AZ Gaslight Music Hall United States
Time: 1:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages/Licensed. Address: 13005 N. Oracle Rd.. “Honky Tonk Christmas” (Lonely Street Productions).
12/14/19 Oro Valley, AZ Gaslight Music Hall United States
Time: 7:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages/Licensed. Address: 13005 N. Oracle Rd.. “Honky Tonk Christmas” (Lonely Street Productions).
12/16/19 Yuma, AZ Country Roads RV United States
Time: 7:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages/Licensed. “Honky Tonk Christmas” (Lonely Street Productions).
12/19/19 Sonoita, AZ Tia Nita’s Cantina United States
Time: 6:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages. Address: 3119 Arizona 83. Venue phone: 520-455-0500. 6-9pm.
12/21/19 Tucson, AZ Dusty Monk Pub United States
Time: 9:00pm. Age restrictions: No Minors. Address: 201 N. Court Ave.. Monthly residency continues.
12/26/19 Tucson, AZ La Cocina United States
Time: 6:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages. Address: 201 N. Court Ave.. 6-9pm.
01/16/20 Tucson, AZ La Cocina United States
Time: 6:00pm. Age restrictions: No Minors. Address: 201 N. Court Ave.. 6-9pm
01/18/20 Tucson, AZ Dusty Monk Pub United States
Time: 9:00pm. Age restrictions: No Minors. Address: 201 N. Court Ave.. Monthly residency continues.
01/23/20 Tucson, AZ La Cocina United States
Time: 6:00pm. Age restrictions: No Minors. Address: 201 N. Court Ave.. 6-9pm.
02/21/20 Tucson, AZ Habitation Speakeasy United States
Time: 6:00pm. Admission: Free. Age restrictions: All Ages. Address: 641 N. 10th Ave.. 6-9pm; solo lounge speakeasy party! Free / all ages / open bar.
04/04/20 Mesa, AZ Roosters Country United States
Time: 8:30pm. Age restrictions: No Minors. Address: 3731 E. Main St.. Solo acoustic- plus, Jesse Daniel / Jim Bachmann & The Day Drinkers.

Hank Topless Band  

Date City Venue Country
01/26/20 Tucson, AZ Che’s Lounge United States
Time: 7:00pm. Age restrictions: No Minors. Address: 350 N. Fourth Avenue. 7-9pm, on the patio.
02/16/20 New River, AZ Roadrunner Restaurant & Saloon United States
Time: 9:00pm. Age restrictions: No Minors. Address: 47801 N. Black Canyon Hwy.. Start time TBA.

Losers’ Lounge  

Date City Venue Country
01/08/20 Tucson, AZ Owls Club United States
Time: 9:00pm. Age restrictions: No Minors. Address: 236 S. Scott. Guest star: Brea Burns (rockabilly /country, Phoenix).
02/12/20 Tucson, AZ Owls Club United States
Time: 9:00pm. Age restrictions: No Minors. Address: 236 S. Scott. Guest stars: Auld Lang Syne (Bisbee, AZ).
03/11/20 Tucson, AZ Owls Club United States
Time: 9:00pm. Age restrictions: No Minors. Address: 236 S. Scott. Guest star: Grip Jensen.
04/08/20 Tucson, AZ Owls Club United States
Time: 9:00pm. Age restrictions: No Minors. Address: 236 S. Scott. Guest star: T.S. Henry Webb.
05/13/20 Tucson, AZ Owls Club United States
Time: 9:00pm. Age restrictions: No Minors. Address: 236 S. Scott. Guest star: Jim Bachmann.

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Who? What?

Kind words from strangers and friends.

Hank has a heartfelt, throat-aching voice that brings #GeorgeJones and #WillieNelson to mind. Big Black Heart is a fantastic group of stripped down, lonesome songs and not one of them is filler. An extremely underrated musician. “#BigBlackHeart” displays his talent as a storyteller just as much as a singer, writer, and guitarist. His heartfelt music is worth checking out and I suggest anyone into country blues, #honkytonk, #RealCountryMusic, and #folkmusic to give this guy a listen, and a follow! 10/10 for this motherfucker!”

Wesley “The Gunslinger” Gray, Instagram post

”Classic covers and damn-well written originals, too…one of the sweetest country voices in Arizona, possibly the Southwest.”

Kris Kerry, Rialto Theatre

“Topless plays classic country, with some blues around the edges, with skilled guitar playing and a rich voice that rings with a bit of Willie Nelson.”

Eric Swedlund, Zocalo