For a band to not only last beyond 30 years together but keep scaling more imposing heights, it’s going to need a sense of purpose. In the case of The Woggles, the seasoned garage rockers past that milestone with a renewed rallying cry to move ever forward, despite the death of their lead guitar player Flesh Hammer aka Jeff Walls shortly before the pandemic took hold..
Currently The Woggles have several friends filling in on guitar, including Graham Day (The Prisoners, Solar Flares, Thee Mighty Caesars) and Shane Pringle (Tiger! Tiger!, Bad Spell) while the band looks for a new permanent member.
The band is touring in support of a new single Flesh Hammer b/w The Witch out on Wicked Cool Records (Steven Van Zandt’s label), inspired by the late guitarist.
The single is from an upcoming album featuring contributions on lead guitar from the likes of Steven Van Zandt (Little Steven), Graham Day, Shane Pringle, Greg Cartwright (Reigning Sound), Peter Greenberg (Barrence Whitfield & The Savages), Rick Miller (Southern Culture on the Skids), Keith Streng (The Fleshtones), and Pat Beers (The Schizophonics).
“The band is not as much an institution as a way of life,” says frontman “The Professor” Mighty Manfred. “The main thing is to keep swimming, cause the shark has got to keep moving.”
The band continues to feature the sock-it-to-them rhythm section of bassist Buzz Hagstrom and drummer Dan Eletxro, both also sometime members of savage English rockers Graham Day & The Gaolers.
“Alan Freed once said that ‘Rock and roll is a river of music that has absorbed many streams,’” quotes Manfred. “The Woggles drink from its many tributaries, from early rock and roll and R&B to ’60s garage rock, British Invasion, ’60s soul and forward.”
Fusing pure rock and soul from vintage sources into their own singular sound, The Woggles lay it down hard and loud but with more majesty than recklessness. Their beats and riffs are as strident as Manfred’s swagger and strut onstage. Having played in the past with Johnny Cash, Link Wray, The Zombies and nearly every garage rock group worth its salt, as Meredith Ochs wisely advised on NPR All Songs Considered: “Go see a Woggles show. It will change your life.”
A refreshng taste of authentic Rock & Roll for those with a garage band palate.