Devil in a Woodpile

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Devil in a Woodpile
Devil in a Woodpile 1287.JPG
Devil in a Woodpile on stage at the Hideout, playing with David Honeyboy Edwards
Background information
Origin Chicago, Illinois, United States
Genres Alt country
Country rock
Labels Bloodshot Records
Associated acts Sanctified Grumblers, Wee Hairy Beasties
Members Rick "Cookin" Sherry, Tom Ray, Joel Paterson
Past members Paul K

Devil in a Woodpile is a band from Chicago, Illinois. Although they routinely give a fresh sound to 80-year-old songs, their repertoire and instrumentation categorizes them as a country blues or jug band.


Rick Sherry and Tom V. Ray first began playing together in the early 1990s as part of the Jake LaBotz Trio. After this unit broke up, the group began backing David Honeyboy Edwards, and performed as Devil in a Woodpile in between sets. The band first won acclaim locally in Chicago by playing frequent gigs at The Hideout. Signing with local folk/country label Bloodshot Records, the group released its first album in 1998 and a second in 2000. Soon after this they toured with Son Volt in the USA. Adding Madison, Wisconsin native Joel Paterson to the lineup in 2003, the group released its third record for Bloodshot in 2005. Gary Schepers (tuba) or Beau Sample (bass) often play with the band when Tom Ray is not available.

In the summer of 2007, the group opened for the folk legend Ramblin' Jack Elliott in Cleveland.

After more than ten years playing their weekly Tuesday slot at the Hideout, the group disbanded in 2009. That year, Rick Sherry joined with guitarist Eric Noden and bassist Beau Sample to form a new group, the Sanctified Grumblers.[1] This group plays in the same style, and eventually took over the old Hideout residency. Sherry has since re-reformed Devil in a Woodpile with Joel Paterson on guitar, banjo and kazoo, and Beau Sample on upright bass and jug. In 2015, Devil in a Woodpile/Sanctified Grumblers was inducted into the Jug Band Hall of Fame.[2]


For the most part, Devil in a Woodpile perform cover tunes, playing and recording their own interpretation of an eclectic range of old songs. Their repertoire stretches from blues, jazz and ragtime, to traditional folk songs and some country influences. Their own compositions follow the same pattern. While performing with blues legend, David Honeyboy Edwards has a more laid back sound. On their most recent album, In Your Lonesome Town, they cover a Charlie Patton song "Shake It and Break It" as well as Led Zeppelin's "Bron-Y-Aur Stomp."


Current members
Former members


  • Devil in a Woodpile (Bloodshot, 1998)
  • Division Street (Bloodshot, 2000)
  • In Your Lonesome Town (Bloodshot, 2005)


External links[edit]