Soulive

7th Annual Backbeat Jazzfest Series Coming Soon

Backbeat Foundation began its Backbeat Jazzfest Series in 2006, crossing our fingers and hoping that the music lovers who annually descend upon our city would not let Hurricane Katrina silence the music, passion and kinetic energy of the night.  The fans did not disappoint and now 7 years later we continue to celebrate the MUSIC.

Snowlive ft. Soulive & JJ Grey w/ The Hartwick Horns @ Fox Theater

KUNC & KGNU are proud to present Snowlive ft.

Soulive & Lettuce Announce Royal Family Ball Fall Tour

Preeminent soul-funk trio Soulive, fresh off hosting their first ever festival The Royal Family Affair earlier this summer, have announced a full-on Royal Family Ball tour for Fall 2011. The run will see the return of Soulive to eight cities, including New York City, Chicago, Boston, Portland, Pittsburgh, Falls Church, Philadelphia and a two-night Halloween blowout in Burlington.

Soulive's Al Evans Unearths Crushed Velvet

Royal Family Records has announced the May 24 release of the long lost 1970s' motion picture soundtrack The Big One by Crushed Velvet & The Velveteers. This never-before-issued soul music gem was recently unearthed by Soulive drummer Alan Evans when a family friend in Buffalo, NY put him in touch with the movie's director Cleo McBride. A 1974 Shaft-meets-007 Blaxploitation production, The Big One never made it to the big screen as the film was reported to have been destroyed in a fire soon after completion. The soundtrack recordings remained dormant until Evans was recruited to mix the original sessions and release it through Soulive's record company Royal Family Records. The Brooklyn-based label will release the soundtrack as both a free mp3 album download and on limited edition vinyl.

The track listing is:

1. The Big One (Main Theme)
2. Thunderbird
3. Felecia's Love Theme
4. Detroit Slim
5. The Lay Down
6. Memphis Stomp
7. London Black (pts. 1,2,3)
8. Big Chase
9. The Big One (End Theme)

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More about Crushed Velvet & The Velveteers

In the late 60s and early 70s, Buffalo, NY was a well-known hotspot for funk and soul music. One of the stand-outs on the scene was a guitarist and vocalist who went by the name Crushed Velvet. He backed many of Buffalo's finest musicians and was the first call most national hit-makers would make when needing to assemble a local band for Buffalo dates. Inspired to start his own band, he assembled Crushed Velvet and the Velveteers. They hit the scene hard bringing a tight new sound to “The Queen City." The response was so overwhelming that it quickly became clear the next logical step was to set their sites on New York City. As plans were being made for a move to the Big Apple, Crushed Velvet got a call from an old band-mate turned filmmaker Cleo McBride. Cleo had recently been given his first big break to direct a film called The Big One. This was not going to be a run of the mill Blaxploitation movie, but a film to turn the industry on its head. The main character was to be the first African-American spy hero, chasing down "the man" across the world.  Crushed Velvet believed this could be the band's ticket to the top, so plans for NYC were shelved. Instead, they began recording the album of their lives.  After nearly a year of writing and recording, the soundtrack was near completion. It was around this time that Crushed Velvet received the devastating news that would shatter those dreams. On March 23, 1974, the home of Cleo McBride was burned to the ground along with all of the master film reels for The Big One.

After the fire, all that remained was the shock and allegations of an entire community.  Cleo McBride was the first to claim that the government was at fault for the destruction of his work because of its positive and powerful depiction of a "black man as a strong, worldly hero."  With no film to accompany the music and an overall paranoia associated with anything having to do with The Big One, the soundtrack was shelved. Crushed Velvet broke up the band and disappeared from the Buffalo music scene.

In 2010, Soulive drummer Alan Evans was contacted by a family friend who'd been in touch with Cleo McBride. Aware that Evans, a Buffalo-native, had achieved a great deal of success in the music industry and was also operating his own recording studio PlayonBrother, they shared the story of The Big One and Crushed Velvet & The Velveteers, hoping he'd listen to the tapes. Intrigued by the story, Evans agreed and what he found was pure soul music gold. He took to the task of mixing the recordings and preparing them for worldwide release through Soulive's label Royal Family Records.

THE BIG ONE, the original motion picture soundtrack by CRUSHED VELVET & THE VELVETEERS is available May 24 as a free mp3 album download and on limited edition vinyl through Royal Family Records.

Watch video with Al Evans explaining history of The Big One

Download a free mp3 of "The Big One (Main Theme)"

Rubber Soulive Tour Kicks Off This Weekend

Soulive has announced U.S. tour dates for the remainder of 2010 in support of their ninth studio album, Rubber Soulive. The 27-show run kicks off this weekend with a New York City hometown blow out dubbed The Royal Family Ball at Terminal 5, featuring special guests John Scofield, Talib Kweli, Christian Scott, Big Sam and Maurice Brown, as well as Royal Family crew Nigel Hall, Lettuce and The Shady Horns. Other highlights include festival appearances at Bear Creek Festival and Clearwater Jazz Festival, stops throughout the Northeast, Southeast, Midwest and West Coast and a handful of two-night stands, including Port City Music Hall in Portland, Higher Ground in Burlington, The Independent in San Francisco, Cervante's in Denver and a New Year's Eve celebration at Paradise in Boston.

The Brooklyn-based soul-funk trio just released Rubber Soulive, a tribute to The Beatles, which went to no. 1 on the iTunes jazz chart. The 11-track collection features Soulive's inimitable interpretations of Fab Four classics like "In My Life," "Eleanor Rigby" and "I Want You (She's So Heavy)." The band cut the album at their recording facility, Playonbrother Studios, and will release the effort through their own label, Royal Family Records. After a series of albums on major labels that experimented with guest vocalists, DJs and horn sections, Rubber Soulive signals a return to the band's roots with founding members Eric Krasno, Neal Evans and Alan Evans front and center and all operations under their own roof.

In early reviews of Rubber Soulive, All Music Guide declared "Like the Liverpool lads who intuitively meshed together, Soulive's members interlock to yield results greater than the sum of its parts on this successful tribute that combines the Beatles sense of excitement, imagination and musical exploration with a funky, down home, R&B/jazz groove." While Something Else blog wrote, "In bringing back some of the great tunes of The Beatles, Soulive brought themselves back to their no-frills, greasy early days when they were busting their collective tails to make a name for themselves."

Soulive's upcoming fall tour dates are:

October 1 | Maritime Magic | Baltimore, MD
October 2 | Terminal 5 | New York, NY
October 7 | Northern Lights | Albany, NY
October 8 | Port City Music Hall | Portland, ME
October 9 | Port City Music Hall | Portland, ME
October 16 | Clearwater Jazz Festival | Clearwater, FL
October 29 | Higher Ground | Burlington, VT
October 30 | Higher Ground | Burlington, VT
November 4 | The Rex | Pittsburgh, PA
November 5 | The State Theater | Falls Church, VA
November 6 | World Cafe Live | Philadelphia, PA
November 7 | Capital Ale House | Richmond, VA
November 8 | Pisgah | Asheville, NC
November 9 | The Poor House | Charleston, SC
November 10 | Neighborhood Theater | Charlotte, NC
November 11 | Masquerade | Atlanta, GA
November 13 | Bear Creek Music & Art Festival | Live Oak, FL
November 19 | Double Door | Chicago, IL
November 20 | Orpheum Theater | Madison, WI
December 10 | The Independent | San Francisco, CA *w/ special guest Karl Denson
December 11 | The Independent | San Francisco, CA *w/ special guest Karl Denson
December 12 | Humbolt Brews | Arcata, CA *w/ special guest Karl Denson
December 14 | Harlow's | Sacramento, CA
December 15 | Moe's Alley | Santa Cruz, CA
December 16 | The Roxy | Los Angeles, CA
December 17 | Cervante's Masterpiece Ballroom | Denver, CO
December 18 | Cervante's Masterpiece Ballroom | Denver, CO
December 30 | Paradise | Boston, MA
December 31 | Paradise | Boston, MA

Soulive Pays Tribute to The Beatles on 'Rubber Soulive'

New York City's preeminent soul jazz trio, Soulive, bring the funk to The Beatles' iconic repertoire with the release of Rubber Soulive due September 14 on the band's own Royal Family Records. Featuring renditions of 11 classics by The Fab Four, including "Come Together," "I Want You (She's So Heavy)" and "Revolution," Rubber Soulive takes its place in a lineage of classic instrumental albums by the likes of Booker T. & The M.G.'s, George Benson and Count Basie that have paid tribute to The Beatles.  Soulive will announce an extended U.S. Fall tour to support the release in the coming weeks.

"We've always been big Beatles' fans. They're consistently in heavy rotation in all of our lives. And then for Halloween last year we had a great show in D.C. by trying out an all-Beatles set. The material was so much fun to play that we decided it had to be put to wax," explains Soulive guitarist Eric Krasno. "At first we thought about doing all of Rubber Soul, but with so many amazing songs to choose from we expanded the scope and picked the ones that lent themselves to our sound, and where we could  best add a Soulive flavor."

Recorded over four days at drummer Alan Evans' own Playonbrother Studios in upstate New York, Rubber Soulive presents the band back in its original trio format. After a handful of albums experimenting with different vocalists and horn sections, it's apparent from the album's opening track, a greasy rendition of "Drive My Car," that a return to form was in order. For the next 40 minutes, Soulive add their inimitable stamp to one classic after the next from The Beatles’ adored catalog. A stately bounce informs "In My Life" punctuated by a majestic organ break courtesy of Neal Evans. "Eleanor Rigby" finds Alan pushing insistent syncopation into the backbeat and Neal covering a full string section with his two hands. A gorgeous rendition of "Something" makes clear that while Krasno can get down with the best of them, he can also dig deep into the heart of a ballad as he rings every last drop of emotion from the classic George Harrison melody. The trio rounds out the set with a three-dimensional version of "While My Guitar Gently Weeps." The performance concisely encapsulates the definitive Soulive sound built upon the trio's shimmering, wah-drenched guitar licks, soaring Hammond organ lines and relentlessly propulsive swing.

Over a decade into their career, Soulive are having more fun than ever recording and performing together. This past March the band set up shop at Brooklyn Bowl in Williamsburg for a two-week residency dubbed Bowlive that featured special guests ranging from Talib Kweli to Susan Tedeschi to Raul Midon. The event will be documented on a forthcoming DVD release this winter. They operate their own state-of-the-art recording studio, as well as, their own record label Royal Family Records that alongside recent Soulive projects is preparing to offer up albums by Eric Krasno, Lettuce and Break Science. In early 2011, the fledgling indie will release the highly anticipated debut album from the acclaimed, young R&B vocalist Nigel Hall. In the coming months, however, the focus is clearly on the lineup that put them on the forefront of the soul jazz revival. With a fall tour on the horizon and a delectable new album filled with red hot renditions of classics by The Beatles, things are starting to "Come Together" for the original three, right now, all over again.

www.royalfamilyrecords.com/soulive
www.facebook.com/soulive

Rubber Soulive is available September 14 on vinyl, CD and mp3.

Soulive w Shady Horns + Benevento/Russo Duo @ Studio at Colton

duoSince forming Soulive in 1999, guitarist Eric Krasno, organist Neal Evans and drummer Alan Evans have developed a reputation as one of the most sought after instrumental soul-funk trios around, a hard-touring live act that's thrown down everywhere from small rock clubs to opening arena shows for the Rolling Stones. The musical relationships that Soulive has developed, from Chaka Khan, to Dave Matthews, Talib Kweli John Scofield, Derek Trucks, Susan Tedeschi, Robert Randolph, Joshua Redman, and so many others, speak volumes about how versatile these talented musicians are. Jazz, hip-hop, rock, soul, funk, R & B, Blues - musically, there is not much Soulive hasn't done. Joining the funk powerhouse for a very special performance will be the raging horn section of Lettuce, The Shady Horns, and emerging soul vocalist Nigel Hall.

Following the funky beats of Soulive will be a performance by the essentials of the jam band scene, the Benevento/Russo Duo. The Benevento/Russo Duo formed in 2002 when Joe Russo was offered a Thursday night residency at New York City's Knitting Factory. He enlisted childhood chum Marco Benevento and the two performed as an organ and drum combo for $50 each. With hardly any written material at first, the Duo made a virtue out of necessity by converting loose sketches into 20-minute improvisations. From the very beginning, the group proved that they could also handle instrumental revisions of Led Zeppelin or Radiohead songs with equal skill and audacity. Far from its initiation, when the Benevento/Russo Duo was conceptualized for economy, these days the band remains a twosome of pure artistic desire.The Benevento/Russo Duo was the winner of New Groove of the Year in 2005, at the 5th Annual Jammys. They are an indie-rock band that jams. They are a jazz-combo that rocks.

Don't miss a night of exceptional musical performances at The Studio at Colton Theater!

And remember, this year the Backbeat Jazzfest Series will be offering music lovers and the musicians they love smoke-free environments at all shows.

Advance tickets are $25 and can be purchased at www.backbeatpresents.com or www.ticketweb.com.

Additional details and information about the events can be found at www.backbeatfoundation.org or by visiting the Foundation's Myspace and Facebook. Additional information and updates about the series can be found at the Backbeat Jazzfest Series 2009 group page.

For information about Soulive please visit www.royalfamilyrecordings.com
or www.myspace.com/soulive. Additional information about the Benevento/Russo duo can be found at www.beneventorussoduo.com. For information on Nigel Hall please visit www.nigelhallmusic.com.

The Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco-Free Living (TFL) and the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals Tobacco Control Program (LTCP) coordinate their efforts in tobacco prevention and control by providing statewide coordination of existing tobacco control initiatives, funding innovative community programs for tobacco control, and improve the overall health and quality of life in Louisiana. For more information visit, www.tobaccofreeliving.org.