A quick dose of outside-the-box New Orleans funk that I played during setbreak of Anders Osborne at Brooklyn Bowl on 12-10-16.
Setbreak of Joe Russo's Almost Dead at Brooklyn Bowl on 10-8-16 continued in my tradition of tweener sets of funky covers of classic rock artists, including Bob Dylan, Lou Reed, Janis Joplin, The Doobie Brothers, Stephen Stills, Creedence Clearwater Revival, The Doors, The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, The Animals, and Cream.
The Mission: Play a set of high-energy New Orleans funk without playing tracks by The Meters prior to the killer show from Foundation of Funk on 5-20-16. Finding 50 minutes of New Orleans funk tracks that don't include any members of The Meters as backing musicians is damn near impossible, so I didn't bother with that, but I did find some sweet, unusual grooves.
Freaks Ball XVI was an epic throwdown for the ages at Brooklyn Bowl. It was my third show alongside the incredible Joe Russo's Almost Dead, so I provided the third installment of my Classic Rock Covered in Funk series, this one featuring funked-out covers of The Band, David Bowie, The Kinks, The Rolling Stones, Traffic, The Allman Brothers Band, Elton John, Buffalo Springfield, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Talking Heads, and Blood, Sweat, and Tears.
I was once again honored to open for the legendary George Clinton & Parliament-Funkadelic who brought a great crowd to New York City's Governors Island on July 3, 2015. They wanted to get up and get down. They were my kinda people.
On November 11, 2015, the world lost one of the most important figures in the history of music. Allen Toussaint was more than a brilliant songwriter, arranger, producer, and performer. He was a truly humble gentleman who was more than happy to serve as a major ambassador for New Orleans. This giant of a man was a personal hero of mine, and I was really looking forward to sharing a bill with him in January. While on the road a day after his passing, I assembled this tribute mix, which only hints at his indelible mark in R&B, soul, rock, doowop, blues, traditional jazz, modern jazz, and of course, FUNK.
My opening set for Nolafunk's 9th Annual Mardi Gras Ball on 2-13-15 was a tribute to the spirit of New Orleans' Mardi Gras: gospel music, Mardi Gras Indians, and parades. The recently deceased Big Chief Bo Dollis, leader of the Wild Magnolias, was honored here with three tracks. This one starts slow, but it picks up steam like any good parade would.
Freaks Ball XV was a special event at Brooklyn Bowl that called for a special set at the break, a rundown of some favorite funk covers of classic rock songs originally performed by Neil Young, Led Zeppelin, The Who, The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, The Doors, Three Dog Night, Talking Heads, Traffic, and Elton John.
I played this collection of killer tracks by some lesser known female soul singers during setbreak between Nicki Bluhm & The Gramblers and The Mother Hips at Brooklyn Bowl on 9-20-14.
I decided to open Nolafunk's 5th Annual Summer Jazz Fest with Funkadelic's "Can You Get To That," but I had no other plan. The weather and setting was beautiful, and the crowd was chill. Next thing I knew, I'd dropped 40 straight minutes of a 96 beats-per-minute funk groove. Dig it.
I wanted to do something different for setbreak of Soulive's Bowlive show at Brooklyn Bowl. Last year, I saw the great Booker T. Jones sit in for a nice set of Stax classics, so that inspired me to play a set of Stax. As one of the top soul and funk labels in history, there were so many great songs to choose, but I decided to skip the obvious to dig Deep in the Stacks of Stax for some lesser known nuggets. The Stax catalog is huge and loaded with great songs that never became hits, so I'll probably revisit this one again. In the meantime, you better jump back 'cause it's gettin' funky 'round here.
I was DJing at Brooklyn Bowl for setbreak of the great Bustle In Your Hedgerow, and since it was the 50th Anniversary of the Beatles landing in America (only a few miles away at JFK), it seemed fitting to play a little soul and funk tribute to The Fab Four. There were so many great covers to choose from, but I skipped some of the obvious ones in favor of a couple lesser known gems. The crowd response couldn't have been better, so I hope you dig it as much as they did. Thank you, John, Paul, George, and Ringo!
A last minute call to open for the legendary George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic gave me the opportunity to play some unorthodox tunes along with a few mainstays that the older-than-usual crowd really dug. In the 1970s, Parliament Funkadelic took funk to a cosmic, psychedelic place, so I was happy to break out of my box by dropping some numbers with a rougher edge as well as a couple disco-fied funk nuggets that fit the era. I'd spent the previous ten days traveling the West Coast, finding a good amount of inspiration on both XMSirius' Soultown and Deep Tracks stations, and I assembled a playlist on the flight back from San Francisco. I touched down, hopped in a cab, and sped off to Lower Manhattan, arriving to warm up a great crowd for two hours in preparation for the landing of the muthaship...
After Little Feat, Papa Grows Funk, and Outerboro Brass Band had finished wowing the crowd at the picaresque Beekman Beer Garden on the East River waterfront during the Nolafunk Summer Jazz Fest, I dropped this mini-set of Nola brass band ballers for a boisterous crowd who wanted to get down. Mission accomplished.
Fat Tuesday 2-12-13 was a rollicking affair at NYC's elite club, Marquee, featuring Trombone Shorty & Orleans Ave., High & Mighty Brass Band, and yours truly. Here's a little tweener set that got the crowd warmed up for Shorty.