Many local music enthusiasts lauded the recent return of Will & the Bushmen. This iconic Azalea City band was a notable force in the ‘80s and ‘90s college alt. rock scene, and recently the band provided a nostalgic time trip to the sounds of yesterday with two reunion shows. Now, the same fans have tears in their eyes as the news of the death of guitarist/songwriter Sam Baylor spread through the music scene.

Sam Baylor of Will and the Bushmen.

Sam Baylor of Will and the Bushmen.

On Wednesday, March 18, word quickly spread that the 52-year-old musician had died overnight in his sleep. Bushmen front man Will Kimbrough expressed his thoughts through social media and gave fans, friends and family a source of emotional therapy in this sad time.

“Do yourselves a favor and give the Bushmen stuff a listen, then listen to Sam’s two solo records, ‘Life on Trouble Street’ and ‘Namaste,’” Kimbrough said. “Sam had his demons, but to the end, he was a great songwriter, and a real stylist and artist.”

In addition to his work with Will & the Bushmen, both “Life on Trouble Street” and “Namaste” showcased Baylor’s talent for bringing nostalgic sounds into modern times. Baylor also filled his songs with lyrics that gave the world his quirky views on life and all its complexities. At press time, no news on a memorial service or funeral had been released.

Slash to shred Soul Kitchen
Many consider Guns N’ Roses to be one of the most prolific bands in rock ‘n’ roll. One of the most influential creative forces behind this band was a guitarist simply called Slash. Armed with a Gibson Les Paul, Slash lived up to his name by ripping across the fret-board with a hell-bent sound that quickly launched him to guitar god status. When a majority of the founding members (including Slash) left Guns N’ Roses, the guitarist continued on with a variety of projects including Slash’s Snake Pit and Velvet Revolver.

Slash will soon be making his first visit to the Azalea City with a new effort, featuring Myles Kennedy & the Conspirators, and are scheduled to take the stage at the Soul Kitchen on Wednesday, April 29. Kennedy is better known as the rhythm guitarist/vocalist for the band Alter Bridge. This collective will be performing cuts from their latest collaborative effort “World on Fire.”

With each track, Kennedy’s vocals are an excellent complement to Slash’s trademark Gibson sound, which together, cannot be duplicated. Tickets are on sale now at Soul Kitchen, their website, Mellow Mushroom (WeMo/MiMo) and by calling 1-866-468-7630.