The Seratones are a fascinatingly soulful marriage of rock, punk and jazz.
AJ Haynes, whom NYLON aptly described as a “badass front-woman”, leads the four-piece band from Shreveport, Louisiana.
Their debut album, “Get Gone,” has already brought them acclaim and given them a chance to tour in the U.S. and internationally.
The album brings a fresh new take on rock by mixing in quirky tastes of grunge, punk, jazz and blues. Haynes’ powerful vocals ring out on every song and bring deep and passionate soulfulness to the album. The Seratones are represented by The Black Keys’ former label, Fat Possum Records.
Haynes, who met her bandmates through a mutual friend, described the impact they had on her musical tastes.
“Growing up, my mother raised me on a lot of flower-child music from the ‘60s and a lot of doo-wop, so being introduced to punk music with them was really something special,” Haynes said. “Before then I had been listening to nothing but jazz and blues music.”
Haynes has enjoyed mixing these various styles with the Seratones.
“I think rock ‘n’ roll as an ethos borrows from all types of cultures. Rock ‘n’ roll has the ability to take the best parts of everything and give it a new slant,” she said.
The ability to pull from different genres and inspirations has also been freeing for Haynes as an artist.
“I feel like I just have a lot more to play with,” said Haynes. “Because everything I’ve learned with music is playful, and I just go with my intuition wherever I’m led. It can be kind of overwhelming because you can do anything, which is the great paradox of being an artist. That supposed liberty can also be incredibly stifling, but I just have fun playing.”
Haynes’ musical role models include Irma Thomas, who she described as “one of the first women I saw perform in a powerful way.” Haynes also looks up to Tina Turner, Grace Slick and Brittany Howard.
Haynes described her band’s songwriting process as very collaborative, with every member contributing their own part.
“I think a song wants what a song wants,” said Haynes. “We’re kind of just trying to figure out what that is.”
The Seratones will be playing at The East Room in Nashville Wednesday at 8 p.m.
Find their music at www.seratones.band.
This article was written by Sara Scannell. Photo courtesy of the Seratones.