Nine Pound Hammer first played at The Ross Theater, openning for the Xtian rap group, The Disciples Of Decadence, in nearby Evansville, Indiana, with drummer Toby Myrig, David Epperson, and bassist Brian (Forrest) Payne, in 1984. David and Brian left, and Bart Altman, thunderstick man from The Disciples Of Decadence, joined on bass. This lineup played locally in Owensboro, Kentucky and Evansville Indiana, garnering a very loyal following before relocating to Lexington, Kentucky as the Raw Recruits. The band then changed their name to The Black Sheep and became the house band at Great Scott's Depot. Darren Howard replaced Toby, and the band became Nine Pound Hammer again. The name of the band is taken from the Merle Travis song Nine Pound Hammer.
Brian Moore (Active Ingredients) and Rob Hulsman (Tarbox Ramblers) joined on bass and drums in 1988, just before recording the band's first LP, The Mud, The Blood, and The Beers.
The band has six full length albums and several EPs.
In 2005, Nine Pound Hammer was asked to pen a theme song and lyrics for 12 oz. Mouse, a new Adult Swim animated series showing on America's Cartoon Network. Singer Scott Luallen also appears in the series as the voice actor for the character Roostre. More recently, they were featured on Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film for Theaters Colon the Soundtrack with the track "Carl's Theme," in which the lyrics play off of the character "Carl" and one of his lines in ATHF. (Taken from Wikipedia.
1985: Blaine Cartwright and Scott Luallen, natives of a small western Kentucky town (Owensboro) first played at The Ross Theater in nearby Evansville, Indiana, with drummer Toby Myrig, David Epperson, and bassist Brian (Forrest) Payne. David and Brian left, and Bart Altman joined on bass. This lineup played locally in Owensboro (KY) and Evansville (IN) before moving to Lexington (KY) as the Raw Recruit. The band then changed the name to the Black Sheep, and became the house band at Great Scott's Depot. Darren Howard replaced Toby, and the band became Nine Pound Hammer again.
Kathy Lewellyn replaced Bart on bass. The band records "Band-In #12," a Detroit, Michigan garage-rock show.
Rob Hulsman (drums) and Brian Moore (bass) join and record "The Mud, the Blood, and the Beers" LP for Wanghead in 1988. Matt Bartholomy replaces Brian on bass.
The Cadillac Inn/Surfabilly 7" is recorded in 1991. "Smokin Taters" LP is recorded for Crypt Records in 1992. The band tours Europe for the first time, 56 shows in 65 days. Johnny Evans replaces Rob on drums for another European tour. "Hayseed Timebomb" LP is recorded for Crypt Records in April/July 1994 at Stockyard Studios in Glasglow, KY with Bill Waldron on drums.
They tour Europe again with Ohio band Gaunt, including a show at The Vera, in Sweden. (A live recording of this infamous show would be released in '99 as a double LP/cd.) Adam Neal joins on drums for a U.S./Canada tour.
In 1995, the band plays Sleazefest, record the "Nothin' To Do" 7" and the "Teenage Head" 7" for Answer Records. In 1996, Bill returns for a 10-day tour of Japan that ends up being the band's last tour for several years. In 1997, the "Dead Flowers" 7" is released on Answer Records.
Blaine ( with wife Ruyter Suys and Hammer drummer Adam Neal ) forms the band Hell's Half-Acre, which (after several drummer/bassist changes) becomes Nashville Pussy, who tour incessantly and are nominated for a Grammy. Nine Pound Hammer is on hiatus during this time.
Nine Pound Hammer reunites in late 2000 for two reunion shows: Atlanta (9/23) and Lexington (12/22). Other sporadic reunion shows follow. They play Sleazefest 2001 in August at Chapel Hill, NC.
In Spring 2002, three shows featuring new material and a new drummer (Brian Pulito) are played in Atlanta (4/6), Lexington (5/17) and Nashville (5/18). Shortly thereafter, in May 2002, the boys record a new album on the analog setup at Barrick Studios (Glasgow, KY). In the fall, they play Birmingham, Alabama and Austin, Texas.
In February 2003, the band plays an Atlanta gig, and the notorious 2003 L.A. Shakedown. Matt Bartholomy, longtime bass player, leaves the band and Earl Crim takes over his duties. The band plays two European Music Festivals, Sjock Festival in Belgium and Serie Z in Spain.
In March of 2004, the band plays Richmond Kentucky and Austin Texas. New LP entitled "Kentucky Breakdown" released on Acetate Records: May 2, 2004.
2005 Mulebite Deluxe was released on Acetate Rec's
2008 Sex, Drugs and Bill Monroe was released on Acetate Rec's.
SS-20 grew out of the burgeoning Cincinnati punk rock scene of the late 70’s/early 80’s, as the brainchild of brothers Pete and Robert “Jughead” Sturdevant. Theband quickly became the de-facto house band of the epicenter of that scene, the Newport Jockey Club.
The band has been featured on local, national, and international radio stations such as WOXY, WEBN, WLWT, as well as stations in Japan, Great Britain, Ireland and Germany. In 1986, they appeared in an MTV commercial for Little Kings Cream Ale, featuring their song “Radioactive Waste”. In 1987, the song “Pope On Tour” was featured on ABC Primetime during their coverage of Pope John Paul II’s American tour, and a copy of the single is stored in the Vatican Archives. In 2002, on the band’s 30th anniversary, SS-20 were nominated for “Best Punk Band” by the Cincinnati Entertainment Awards.
SS-20 has shared the stage with many the most well-known and respected punk bands of the era, such as the Ramones, the Dead Kennedys, M.D.C., D.R.I., Subhumans, the Business, the Vibrators, D.O.A., Black Flag, the Circle Jerks, Social Distortion, Fear, T.S.O.L., Husker Du, Mission to Burma, the Adolescents, Gang Green, Rocket From the Tombs, J.F.A., Bad Brains, the Dickies, U.K. Subs, the Exploited, Agent Orange, the Dicks, Discharge, Agnostic Front, LES Stitches, Murphy’s Law, the Replacements, the Drones, Infa-riot, G.B.H., Fugazi, Soul Asylum, Suicidal Tendencies, Samhain, Mephiskapheles, the Toasters, the Murder Junkies, Toxic Reasons, Naked Raygun, the Zero Boys, 7 Seconds, the Dictators and the New York Dolls… to name a few.
SS-20 has played, toured and recorded continuously since 1982 and is considered a local treasure. The line-up has evolved over the years but has stayed true to the SS-20 mission to present a progressive political agenda, and bring to bear the inconsistencies of modern life.
Music from our hearts and soul. Sometimes joyous, sometimes broken, sometimes dark, mostly happy, always honest.