Friday night, in conjunction with CIMMfest, check out an eclectic evening of live music as New Orleans’ funky METERS descend upon the Congress Theater alongside local soul-punks JC Brooks & The Uptown Sound, San Diego jazz/funk outfit The Greyboy Allstars and more…
In it’s fifth year, CIMMfest once again celebrates film with an added emphasis this year on music (especially live music).
Alongside other CIMMfest events this weekend (“CIMMpathy for The Stones” celebrates fifty years of Rolling Stones music in film at the Music Box), “Funk Rock Soul” kicks off Friday night at the Congress Theater with a panel discussion devoted to the topic of “Music in Movies” beginning at 6:20PM for CIMMfest badge holders. From there, the evening kicks into high gear with music from Liquid Soul alum, Chicago’s own Jesse De La Pena as well as DJ/Producer Maker.
Celebrating the release of their fourth studio album Inland Emperor at this record release party, The Greyboy Allstars look back on their influential twenty year history by reuniting original band members Karl Denson, Robert Walter, Elgin Park and Chris Stillwell (drummer Aaron Redfield rounds out the quintet’s lineup Friday night). Denson, well known not just for his work with the Allstars but also for his past work with Lenny Kravitz and his groundbreaking fusion of funk and jazz, rejoins the group he co-founded contributing to songwriting, vocals and horns on the band’s first new studio release in six years.
With roots that go all the way back to mid sixties New Orleans, original Meters members Art Neville and George Porter Jr. continue their funky ways today as the funky METERS. Neville, a member of one of New Orleans’ most famous families and one of music’s most influential, has performed with everyone from Paul McCartney to Dr. John and at seventy five years of age, Friday’s show gives funk and R&B provocateurs a rare chance to catch him on keyboard and vocals indoors, in the midwest somewhere other than a summer festival. Porter, on the other hand, has lent his adventurous bass stylings to the likes of everyone from David Byrne and Tori Amos to Jimmy Buffett and Warren Haynes. Rounding out the funky METERS Friday night are Brian Stoltz on guitar and Russell Batiste Jr. on drums.
Boiling down all of the funk and soul sounds referenced above (and putting their own personal Chicago punk spin on it in the process) are JC Brooks & The Uptown Sound. All too often lumped into a convenient industry category with soul revivalists like Fitz & The Tantrums or Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings, The Uptown Sound are clearly influenced by much more. “Some of the tunes that we are demoing and starting to play out live now for the next album definitely take a different direction. They’re more inspired by The Cure and Morrissey and a little bit of new wave” explained frontman Jayson Brooks last August before the band’s performance at Lollapalooza. “A lot of people know us for being like this punk-soul band… But what happens when you go into this very rhythmic, half Kraut-rock, half new wave, slightly minimalist but fleshed out song territory? I really like where it’s going.”
Having dodged a city injunction Thursday morning, the Congress Theater, a city landmark, will remain open for business this weekend despite a list of alleged safety violations drawn up by the city (though another hearing looms Tuesday morning). While a Thursday night concert at the Congress was canceled due to flooding as a result of this week’s weather, as of press time, Friday night’s “Funk Rock Soul” show was set to go on as scheduled.
– Jim Ryan
(Complete information on Friday’s “Funk Rock Soul” concert after the jump)
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“Funk Rock Soul”
Live at the Congress Theater
2135 North Milwaukee Avenue
Chicago, IL 60647
Friday, April 19, 2013
Doors open at 6PM
CIMMfest “Music in Movies” panel discussion begins at 6:20PM
Performers: funky Meters, The Greyboy Allstars, JC Brooks & The Uptown Sound, Jesse de la Pena, Maker
*** Tickets are no longer on sale and will not be available at the door ***