In the summer of 2006, Fifth on the Floor played their first show in a small bar in Central Kentucky. The band was a different beast than it is today: originally six members strong, FOTF reveled in up-tempo songs about women and libation, influenced equally by Creedence Clearwater Revival and Jerry Lee Lewis, by Hank Williams and the Band. Their first record, 2007’s The Color of Whiskey, did not belie its name in the slightest. Songs like “Out at the Bar” and “My Young Life” focused on Saturday night glory, while songs like “Man of my Vice” and “Last Night in Memphis” pointed to the more serious themes the band moved towards in later songwriting.
Fifth on the Floor quickly started garnering attention for their high-energy live shows. Word of mouth put the band further and further from their home state of Kentucky, while the high volume of shows allowed the band to focus its multitude of influences into a cohesive sound. 2010’s Dark and Bloody Ground showed this, nodding at styles ranging from southern rock to blues to bluegrass while maintaining the sound the band had become known for. The record garnered incredible press. Shooter Jennings offered that “Albums like Dark and Bloody Ground and songs like ‘Distant Memory Lane’ should be included in the handbook for new country music listeners,” and No Depression called the record “an album that, like Second Helping or The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion will be the defining record of the decade for the genre.” The band’s exponential fanbase led to shows opening for the Marshall Tucker Band, Lucero, Dale Watson and Blackberry Smoke, as well as several headlining tours throughout the South and the Midwest.
Elements of numerous roots styles show in the band’s music, but Fifth on the Floor’s live show, featuring Aaron “Laser” Graham, Jason Parsons, Matty Rodgers and Justin Wells, is undoubtedly a rock show. The ferocity of the band’s live performances combines with the strength of their collective song-writing on their upcoming record. The album, produced by Shooter Jennings, is due in late 2012.
If you haven’t seen a Fifth on the Floor show, buy a ticket right now. The band’s rowdy rock and roll is everything you’d expect from four Kentucky gentlemen.