The New Orleans Suspects

Featuring members of The Neville Brothers, Radiators, Dirty Dozen Brass Band & James Brown Band

The New Orleans Suspects

Stymie & the Pimp Jones Love Orchestra

Friday, September 7, 2018

Doors: 8:00 pm / Show: 9:00 pm

$27 Advance/ $32 Day of Show (plus fees)

This event is all ages

The New Orleans Suspects
The New Orleans Suspects
It's been said that the musicians of New Orleans are all members of one gigantic band that breaks up into smaller groups on a nightly basis. If this were really the case, The New Orleans Suspects would be in a class all their own. The group is comprised of musicians with experience and versatility that rival any other band that the city has ever produced.

"Mean" Willie Green has been the drummer for the Neville Brothers band since the 1980s. His unique attack has defined funk drumming for a quarter of a century. Yet, he is not a one-dimensional player. His taste in music spans the gamut of modern rock styles and he is as comfortable driving the beat as he is holding down the groove.

Reggie Scanlan's career has been defined by his thirty-three years playing bass in the Radiators, the longest running rock act in the history of New Orleans. But his resume is far deeper. As a young musician he played with blues musicians on the west coast chitlin circuit before returning to his hometown to back up legends like James Booker and Professor Longhair.

Jake Eckert is the sterling-toned lead guitarist in the Dirty Dozen Brass Band. Before joining the quintessential New Orleans funk/brass band, he honed his chops as part of the thriving southern rock scene in Atlanta, cutting his teeth with the likes of Derek Trucks and Col. Bruce Hampton. While living in Los Angeles, he played in the band New Soul Underground along with jazz great Larry Carlton. He has had a chance to perform with Warren Haynes, Dr. John, Allen Toussaint, & Dave Matthews to name a few.

CR Gruver is a classically trained pianist who was bitten by the bug known as New Orleans music after stints touring with nationally known bands such as Outformation and the Atlanta-based singer/songwriter Angie Aparo. Since moving to New Orleans he has immersed himself into the scene and has become a well-regarded sideman adept at James Booker-style piano machinations and the swelling B-3 stylings of Art Neville. Besides playing with many of the city's local luminaries he also leads his own local band, Funkifry'd.

Kevin Harris is a founding member of the Dirty Dozen Brass Band. His tenor saxophone work has graced recordings across the gamut from pop stars Elvis Costello, Dave Matthews and the Black Crowes to zydeco legend Buckwheat Zydeco, jazz songstress Norah Jones, and Modest Mouse, Widespread Panic and many more.

Together these five musicians create music that is firmly rooted in the modern New Orleans sound with compelling originals and tasteful covers. The rhythm section of Scanlan and Green are as comfortable together as red beans and rice. Gruver tickles the ivories or soars into the stratosphere on the organ. Harris provides stellar saxophone fills and solos with great aplomb. Eckert's rhythm guitar work neatly complements his razor sharp solos. Though the band can clearly jam, with Eckert and Gruver trading off on lead vocals they are no simple jam band.
Stymie & the Pimp Jones Love Orchestra
Stymie & the Pimp Jones Love Orchestra
It ain't easy being stankalicious. This is especially true if you are an independent entity. But the funk is proving to be more relevant in the 21st century than ever before. Case in point: the recent revival and revitalization of Stymie and the Pimp Jones Love Orchestra, a San Francisco-based, multi-piece outfit lead by singer/songwriter Sean "Stymie" Sharp.
Stymie is an animated individual. When he speaks about anything, from music to comics to movies, he speaks with an intense and jovial vigor that is as learned as it is inspired. His tiny apartment is littered with ol' school accoutrements, from VHS tapes to boomboxes, but the beauty of modern media trends does not elude him whatsoever. "With file sharing and Youtube," says Stymie, "you are in more control of what you listen to." Thus, you can seek out what you like instead of being nudged into it or spoon-fed something more formulaic.
On this point, Stymie argues, "It is true that not all things are for all people. But this does not mean that you shouldn't give people – the fans – the benefit of the doubt." The man is speaking about categories and genres, abstract concoctions that lead people to "wearing uniforms. Like I got my punk rocker uniform and he's got his gangster uniform and so on." And sure, if you're gonna call Stymie and the PJLO anything, the man doesn't completely object to being tagged as a leader of a funk band, as he explains: "Funk is the least limited genre. 'Funk gets stronger' – to quote George Clinton – but we don't want to limit things at all." In other words, Stymie does not want to "categorize the fan base," as he is also inclined to dip his creative pen into avenues such as ska, R&B, rock, reggae, and even go-go. This musical diversity was a bit harder to realize way back in the 20th century, when massive corporations still dictated listening trends and indies had less resources for getting heard. But now? The game is on.
The band has come a long way and has accomplished a lot of things to get to the pinnacle thatit is at today. The current incarnation, a combo of veteran soldiers and funky-fresh blood, has Stymie tickled stink. "This version of the band is carving out its own identity with these newsongs." Indeed, he has been writing new ditties at an astonishing rate, "inspired by the blessing of these talented people." The current, exuberant and extra-tight line-up includes drummer Jon Merker, Brian Hill on guitar, bassist Martin Ledyard, Jerry Goldstone on guitar, Brigham Hausman on trombone, Keith Waldorf on trumpet, Emery Dora on keyboard, Tupac Mauricio Saavedra on saxophone, as well as vocalists Jospeh "Mojo" Powell, Erica Chriss Patten, Marilee Bazzano.
The new material, with such titles as "Brand New Mustard Machine," "La Toure A Go-Go,"and "Love in Space," will debut in late 2010 – (though a song or two might leak out on the web before that!) And in an effort to whet the appetites of longtime and potential fans alike,the band has uploaded high-quality performance footage of classic Stymie and the PJLO material on Youtube, tunes that can be heard on previous releases such as Dem Sum Goodies and The Secret Hits of the Black and Blue Parade.
Stymie, who grew up in Hollywood off of Sunset, started the band in San Francisco in 1996. The first lineup featured Joe "Mojo" Powell, a soulful harmonizer who still sings with the band today, and Marilee Bazzano soon followed. As for the band name, Stymie thought it up while walking down Haight Street, and the name, like his songs, are meant to remind the audience that there ain't nothin' but overflowin' imagination around here. The band soon proved itself to be incredible live, and while it has enjoyed the honor of opening gigs for the likes of Earth, Wind, & Fire, Fred Wesley, and Billy Preston over the years, Stymie and thePJLO has been packing 'em in with its own sold-out headlining shows for over a decade now.
This is why it is imperative for YOU to come see the man and his crew in a theatre near you.
Venue Information:
Sweetwater Music Hall
19 Corte Madera Ave.
Mill Valley, CA, 94941
http://www.sweetwatermusichall.com/