Archive for Maria McKee

Lost Classics! Lone Justice/Maria McKee

Posted in Lost Classics! with tags , , , , , , on April 30, 2009 by 30daysout

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In the 1980s, Los Angeles was the birthplace of a curious genre called cowpunk, a mashup of punk rock with roots music.  Among the more famous practitioners were the Beat Farmers, the Blasters, Los Lobos, Green on Red and of course, Lone Justice. 

Lone Justice came together in 1982 under the guidance of guitarist Ryan Hedgecock and singer Maria McKee, an L.A. singer whose half brother was Bryan McLean from the psychedelic band Love.  In their early days, Lone Justice was a hot band in the L.A. area – thanks in part to having famous champions and fans like Linda Ronstadt and Benmont Tench, Tom Petty’s keyboardist and Maria McKee’s boyfriend.

Geffen Records put out Lone Justice’s self-titled debut album in 1985 and although a few songs (most notably the Tom Petty-penned “Ways To Be Wicked”) got radio airplay, the album didn’t sell as well as everyone hoped it would.  Maybe Lone Justice wasn’t really a true cowpunk band – the first album showed evidence of ambition beyond the boundaries of the genre.  To my ears, Lone Justice sounded more like a California-style U2 rather than the other bolo tie bands that were out at the time.

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