Local singer-songwriter plays free show at popular Mission bar

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SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Noted local songwriter Tom Heyman brings his band the Irregulars to Zeigeist for a free afternoon show Sunday that also features Bay Area roots rockers Sweet Chariot.

A veteran musician who first came into the public eye as one of the principles in Philadelphia-based band Go To Blazes in the late ’80s, Heyman put out five albums and toured extensively on both sides of the Atlantic up until the band split in 1997. He would relocate to San Francisco the following year, quickly settling into the local scene with stints playing guitar and pedal steel with such renowned local acts as alt-country outfit the Court & Spark, songwriter Chuck Prophet and X bassist John Doe’s solo band.

Heyman also started recording his own roots-oriented songs as a solo artist, tracking a series of albums including the live covers collection Ballads, Blues and Union Dues and his latest effort, the pub-rock inspired new collection Show Business, Baby that came out in 2017 on the Bohemian Neglect imprint. With his long-running Sad Bastard Club night at the Make-Out Room, Heyman regularly features like-minded local songwriters performing their songs in a stripped down setting.


Tom Heyman – The Mission Is On Fire (Official Music Video) by
txheyman on
YouTube

Heyman additionally works as a doorman and bartender at the 22nd Street club, a vantage point that has given him a unique perspective on the rash of fires that have displaced so many people in the Mission District. He was frequently asked questions by patrons about what happened to the building that burned at 22nd and Mission building several times before eventually being demolished, leaving the gaping hole in the block that is set for a new development (he wrote the “gentrifire” anthem in the above featured video, “The Mission Is On Fire,” in response).


Sad Bastard Club Presents: Sonny Smith S02Ep03 by
Sad Bastard Club on
YouTube

During the pandemic, Heyman would shift focus, transforming his Sad Bastard Night into a creatively shot and edited web series on YouTube that gave artists a much-needed outlet to perform as well as a forum to talk about how they were dealing with the shutdown, serving as a sort of therapy session for participants and viewers alike. Heyman also dug into his back catalog, reissuing the 1995 live in the studio recording Go to Blazes…and Other Crimes featuring a mix of originals and eclectic covers from such songwriters as Hank Williams, Jr., Lee Hazelwood, Lou Reed and Gene Clark.

For this free show at beloved Valencia Street watering hole Zeitgeist, Heyman takes the bar’s outdoor back porch stage with his backing band the Irregulars featuring former Creeper Lagoon bassist Dan Carr (who Heyman also played with in the Court and Spark), on bass, drummer Chris Sipe (Rykarda Parasol, Jesse DeNatale, Jim Campilongo, many others) and guitarist Rusty Miller (Cake, Jackpot and many others), digging into the more raucous pub-rock sounds of Heyman’s most recent solo effort. 


Sweet Chariot – Let It Start (Official Video) by
WhoCanYouTrustRec on
YouTube

Opening local favorites Sweet Chariot features Hot Lunch singer Eric Shea playing a mix of Gram Parsons’ cosmic country and Exile On Main Street-era Stones swagger that leans a bit closer to the rock end of the spectrum than his country-tinged late ’90s outfit Mover. The current line-up teams Shea with his former Parchman Farm bandmate Chris Labreche on drums, bassist Doran Shelley (who has played with the Cramps, ex-Hawkwind mainstay Nik Turner and space rockers Farflung) and Ride the Blinds guitarist Chris Guthridge. The band followed up its 2014 self-released debut in 2019 with Lean Into the Breeze, a collection that draws as much on power-pop and pub-rock influences as it does on the band’s earlier twang.  

Tom Heyman and the Irregulars with Sweet Chariot
Sunday, Aug. 14, 2 p.m. Free
Zeitgeist



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