Tuscaloosa’s Ham Bagby Returns Home for Album’s 21st Birthday
A popular Tuscaloosa musician is coming back to his second home for one night only to celebrate his most famous song, as he puts it, "finally being old enough to drink."
Ham Bagby, the artist behind the iconic song "S---'s Crucial," will be performing at Druid City Social from 6 - 9 p.m. this Friday.
"I initially thought the album was turning 20 this year, and that was the celebration I was thinking of when I started planning the show. Then I realized I wrote it in 2000, and COVID would have screwed me out of a 20th anniversary celebration of S---'s Crucial anyway," Bagby said. "So we’ll have a 21st birthday party instead! S---'s Crucial can drink now! S---'s Crucial still can’t rent a car... But S---'s Crucial can stay on its parents' insurance!"
Bagby moved to Tuscaloosa from Birmingham when he was six years old and quickly fell in love with music. He frequently performed in local bars and other venues for the next 20 years before moving back to Birmingham.
"I had always wanted to play guitar," Bagby said. "I begged for one my entire life, and my parents finally got me one when I was 13. I pretty much always played music that was humorous or pushed boundaries. If you had to classify it, I'd say it was rebellious."
Zach Austin & the Lonesome will open the entertainment at 6:00, followed by Birmingham-based comedian Chris Ivey at 6:50. Bagby's show starts at 7:30 and will feature a strong mix of music and comedy.
This 21+ event isn't for the faint of heart, Bagby explained.
"The content is pretty irreverent, vulgar, guitar-heavy with a rock sound. A lot of my songs focus on the south and bar culture." Bagby said. "S---'s Crucial is my most popular song. It sometimes gets taken by one of my newer songs on streaming services, but it's just fun to celebrate. I haven't played with a band in Tuscaloosa since before COVID hit."
Bagby said Tuscaloosa is home to some of his favorite memories, particularly the nine iterations of the "Ham Ham Jam Jam." During each event, Bagby joined area bands at Egan's Bar and for nightly performances during the weekend of his birthday. At the end of each weekend, the bar would donate its earnings to charity. Bagby took pride in the spontaneity of those nights, jumping in with bands without rehearsal and feeling like he was "thrown to the wolves."
"This isn’t just another show, it’s a homecoming for me," Bagby said. "S---'s Crucial was my biggest song when I lived in Tuscaloosa, and I feel like coming back to a bunch of people who want to hear those songs and see that show again is going to be amazing."
As for what's next, Bagby said he's hoping to play more shows, write new songs and ideally record a new album. He released his latest album "Trying Not to Die" last November, but is already chomping at the bit to release more songs.
"I promise I'm ready to do more," Bagby said. "I have a lot more to say."
Advance tickets to Friday's show are $10, with more available at the door for $15. To purchase tickets, click here.