May 5

It was late 1985 or early 1986. I went to see Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers on tour in support of the album Southern Accents. Although the Petty show was good, it was the opening act that left an impression on me… Lone Justice:

Lone Justice was a Cowpunk band from L.A. and the lead singer, Maria McKee, was a ferocious stage presence in a flour sack dress and boots. Their short opening set, house lights up, sound being figured out and all… made me think I was seeing the Next Big Thing.

Their debut album charted, as did the two singles they released, and I remember reading music critics in Rolling Stone (or someplace) rating Lone Justice as one of the top albums of the year. Even so, their music failed to connect, they were over hyped by their label, over controlled in the studio and the band just imploded.

I’ve had the CD for years but came across a gold stamped promo version at 4000 Holes a few weeks back. Even if the Next Big Thing thing didn’t pan out, I remain a fan. Here’s a good looking and sounding video circa 1985… pretty close to what I remember.

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