Originality is in short supply in the music world. Give the Lacs credit for coming up with their “hick-hop.” Clay “Uncle Snap” Sharpe and Brian “Rooster” King combined Southern rap and Southern rock with some country thrown in for good measure.
That might sound like oil and water to most, but somehow the sonic combination is more like chocolate and peanut butter. It took a while for the duo, which formed in 2002 in Georgia, to gel. But the Lacs (Loud-Ass-Crackers) are running on all cylinders.
“Keep It Redneck,” the band’s third album, debuted at No. 3 on Billboard’s Country Album chart in August. Not bad for an act that doesn’t get much love from radio.
“It hasn’t been easy with radio,” Sharpe said. “But you can’t let that stop you. You can’t control what goes on the radio. You just have to worry about what you can. We just keep plowing ahead.”
The Lacs, who will perform Saturday at the Cotillion, have improved with each album. “Country Boy’s Paradise,” released in 2011, is a snapshot of a band developing. It’s all about drinking, women and having fun. 2012’s “190 Proof’ has more songs about – what else? – drinking, the opposite sex and good times. The difference is that the tandem raised the bar in terms of humor quotient and hooks.
And then there’s “Keep It Redneck.” There’s a single, “Kickin’ Up Mud,” which is the catchiest cut the band has delivered to date. The lyrics are clever, and the jams are calmer and more melodic.
“I think you need to grow with each album you put out,” Sharpe said. “We try not to do the same thing. We try to take it to another level.”
Singer-songwriter Colt Ford, who co-founded Average Joe’s Entertainment, was wise enough to sign the Lacs.
“He has helped us more than I could say,” Sharpe said. “It’s been that way with him since day one. He’s been amazing.”
It’s not surprising that the Lacs are a hard-touring band, considering that radio has yet to embrace the free-wheeling ensemble.
“Playing live is a way to thank our fans for their support,” Sharpe said. “Hopefully we can get in front of some people not too familiar with us and maybe get them to check out what we do.”
The Lacs have the potential to reach another echelon. “We’re certainly going to work as hard as we can,” Sharpe said. “We want to make the best songs that we can.”