While blues is the chief inspiration for the Allstars, the band also mixes in an alternative aesthetic (comparable to outfits like the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion or G. Love and Special Sauce), and a traditional rock, jam-band sensibility like Phish, or Gomez.
The Allstars debuted at Dixie Fried '96, sharing the stage with Othar Turner and R. L. Burnside, the show was critically acclaimed in a Memphis newspaper as the Best Show of the Year. The Allstars soon began playing regularly on Beale Street in Memphis Tennessee, at B.B. King’s Blues Hall, and The Black Diamond. In the spring of 2000, the band released their debut album, Shake Hands With Shorty, which garnered them a Grammy nomination.
The North Mississippi Allstars' highly anticipated follow-up 51 Phantom, picks up where Shake Hands With Shorty left off -- this time showcasing the songwriting talents of the brothers Dickinson, while continuing to delve into their southern roots. The album continues the band's love of groove-inspired jams and modern boogie, with a taut selection of original compositions. 51 Phantom resonates with classic melody and youthful groove.
Produced by Luther and Cody's father Jim Dickinson (The Replacements, Big Star, Ry Cooder, Primal Scream), 51 Phantom is a gritty and grooving masterpiece. From the snarl of Snakes in My Bushes, to the anthemic title track, through the sweet ballads of Leavin' and Up Over Yonder, the Allstars have created a focused and brilliant masterpiece that sees them evolving their sound, while still keeping in touch with their Mississippi roots.