by Mark Kemp
If you're a Charlotte music fan who loves bluesy, folky Americana, you know where you can go to get your fix every Friday night: the Comet Grill, a hamburger joint hidden away in a little strip mall off Park Road. That's where Lenny Federal and his musical friends have been packing folks in every week for as long as we can remember.
Federal has been a staple of the Charlotte rock scene since the 1970s, and once had a band with his brother Michael called - oh yes! - the Federal Bureau of Rock 'n' Roll. Lenny also has a son, Case Federal, who carries on the family musical legacy with his own brand of singer/songwriter fare.
Members of the Charlotte Video Project recently caught up with the Lenny Federal Band for the video clip below: a performance of the folk standard "Goin' Down the Road Feeling Bad." It's part of a series of high-quality music videos CL is running between Sept. 11 and Sept. 15 in collaboration with the Video Project, an arts venture that set out to document Charlotteans through 100 Web-based videos showcasing the city's arts and culture. From sports to music and more, the Project's mini-documentaries have been giving viewers outside of Charlotte an inside look at what the Queen City has to offer.
The Lenny Federal Band just finished recording its fourth album, which is due in spring. You can find the band's other discs, including the aptly titled 2007 release It Must Be Friday Night, on Rentsdue Records, at Federal's website.
Enjoy this typical slice of Friday night at the Comet Grill with beloved Charlotte musical stalwarts the Lenny Federal Band: