The great Mississippi Fred McDowell once said, “I don’t play no Rock n’ Roll.” This is definitely something that can also be said about Matt Woods and the Thunderbolts. But, if you want to hear some down-home, juke house blues, look no further. From the delta to the hills the Thunderbolts thumping rhythm and stomping slide workouts will remind you what real party music is meant to be. Simple and straight ahead, with nothin’ but a low down groove that’s raw as a saw blade and guaranteed to make you shake your ass!
Matt Woods is a native of Des Moines, IA. Matt has dedicated countless hours to not only learning his craft, but learning an appreciation and respect for its masters. As a seasoned performer of many local, regional and national clubs and venues, Matt has developed a distinct, mature style while still staying loyal to his blues roots. Versed in traditional delta, hill country and urban electric blues, Matt’s travels to Mississippi and beyond have allowed him to learn first hand from his influences, in the fields, shacks and barrooms that are the true birthplace of American music. Matt’s first CD, “If I was a Fish” (featuring the Thunderbolts) has received critical acclaim, and finished in the top five of the International Blues Foundation’s, “Best Self-Produced Blues album” category in 2006. It continues to receive airplay on radio throughout the U.S. and Europe.
Michael “Thunderfoot” Swanger is a native of West Des Moines and plays drums for the Thunderbolts. The “Nilla Gorilla” as he is also known, kicks like a mule and thumps like a man possessed. A versatile drummer, Michael has played with anyone who’s anyone in central Iowa, from the Soul Searchers to the Iowa Blues Hall of Fame House Band. His stint with the Thunderbolts has not only shown that he is easily the best blues drummer around, but has shown why he is now known by many as “The Baddest Man Alive.” Like his influences, Ted Harvey, Willie Smith and Cedric Burnside, Michael’s style miraculously seems to toe the line between disaster and utopia, while always being right on time.
Scott “Boogaloo” Cochran who also hails from West Des Moines, is responsible for holding down the fat ass of the band-AND comic relief. Scott had been playing bass since glaciers created the North Atlantic Shelf, and it shows. Scott has a vast knowledge of all American roots music, and has been backing up central Iowa’s best, as well as several of the nation’s finest touring acts for decades. Scott has played with the great “Chicago Rick" Lussie, Sweet Betty and Beverly “Guitar” Watkins, just to name a few.
Sometimes wild… and always greasy… Matt Woods & the Thunderbolts will drag you kicking and screaming from the hills of North Mississippi to the streets of Chicago.