The Tampa Bay area is not known for much. Sure, there’s professional sports teams, it’s the strip club capital of the Southeast, we have sandy beaches, can wear shorts in December and there may be a few other things I don’t feel like listing, but we aren’t really known for our musical talents. There’s our crown jewel from way back, The Outlaws, some junky who flamed out on American Idol, and Ronny Elliott. I may be missing one more, but I don’t think I am…well, there is the Smell Yo Dick chick, but she’s from Bartow. Anyway, my point is that we’re better know for our student-fucking teachers and goth scene than for our musical talents and it’s a real damned shame, ’cause there are a lot of really talented kids here busting their asses for little or no support. Today I am gonna talk about a group of those kids who just released a fantastic debut album.

Have Gun, Will Travel is Matthew Burke (voice, acoustic guitar, banjo, harmonica), Daniel Burke (bass guitar, voice), Jean-Paul Beaubien (drums, percussion), Nathaniel Oliver (elec. guitar, lap steel, voice), and Joshua Hernandez (viola). It began as the solo acoustic side project of Matt Burke, releasing an EP that managed to produce a few national ripples. Somewhere between that EP and Casting Shadows Tall as Giants, Burke dropped the “solo” and (I believe) the “side”, making HGWT a full-fledged effort. The result is a solid debut of 12 seemingly death-obsessed tracks. Don’t let that turn you off though, this is an album that can hang with anything on Miles of Music’s It’s A Cracker list, so check them out.

Have Gun Will Travel – Blessing and a Curse
Have Gun Will Travel – Come, All Ye Sinners
Have Gun Will Travel – Pins and Needles

Have Gun Will Travel on myspace, Buy Casting Shadows Tall as Giants


  1. Back in the 90’s Tampa was able to claim some of the heaviest bands out there. Morbid Angel, Obituary, Cannibal Corpse all were from here and recorded at Morris Sound. Those three bands changed the face of metal.

    Assuck was based out of St. Pete and to this day is still considered one of the most influential American grind core bands. There is even talk of a tribute record being done by several newer bands. Youtube is full of bands covering their songs. It is cool to see kids that were in diapers when the band was playing out and recording doing covers of the songs.

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