Presented by Bowery Boston
Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pm
Please note: this show is 18+ with valid ID. Patrons under 18 admitted if accompanied by a parent. Opening acts and set times are subject to change without notice. All sales are final unless a show is postponed or canceled. All bags larger than 12 inches x 12 inches, backpacks, professional cameras, video equipment, large bags, luggage and like articles are strictly prohibited from the venue. Please make sure necessary arrangements are made ahead of time. All patrons subject to search upon venue entry.
Tank and The Bangas
Originating in New Orleans, Tank and The Bangas have all the qualities that relates them, to the city that birth them but a flair that separates them as well. Their performances range from being “One of the most energetic shows you’ll ever see” to “A gospel tent in Mississippi”. Rummaging through their sound like a thrift store hippie, you’ll find the Bangas to provoke a musical reference of Rhythmic Soul and Spoken word among other genres such as Rock, Gospel, Funk, and Folk. Combining the various musical techniques among the Bangas, coupled with the instilling play on lyrics from the lead vocalist; Tank and The Bangas have quilted a unique sound that singles them as one of the most distinctive groups to come out of New Orleans. The group has graced the cover of one of New Orleans most recognized magazines, “OffBeat” and recently won band of the year at the New Orleans Big Easy Awards. The group has opened for acts such as LiAnne LaHavas, PJ Morton, Galactic, Big Freedia, The Revivalist, and The Soul Rebels. Most recently the band was titled as the 2017 NPR Tiny Desk Contest winners.
The scope of Big Freedia’s impact is undeniable. Over the past few decades, the New Orleans native has catapulted herself from local favorite to becoming the anointed Queen of Bounce, sharing some of her high energy flavor on massive hit tracks like Beyoncé’s Grammy-winning “Formation” and Drake’s “Nice For What” while shaping contemporary culture by bringing twerking, shaking and wiggling to a national platform.
“I just want to inspire people to understand that New Orleans culture is very special, it’s a phenomenal place and that we’re on a rise to bigger and better things and we speak it through our music and everyday living down here,” says Freedia, who was born and raised in the city’s 3rd Ward. “The pain and suffering that we go through here in New Orleans, we take it and we flip it around.”
It’s the heartbeat of her Asylum Records debut 3rd Ward Bounce, a fiver-track EP releasing this June. Aerobic, ceaseless and a touch more mainstream than prior releases, the project has all the signifiers of Freedia’s brand of Bounce— throbbing instrumentals, booming vocals, frenetic handclaps—with even sharper songwriting that pushes her sound into new territory. Lead single “Rent” is all attitude, rebuffing the type of people who occupy a space in your mind, while “Karaoke” featuring Lizzo pounds along with robust horns, intended to become the freewheeling type of anthem that soundtracks a night out of singing. Elsewhere, the Goldie-assisted “Play” nods to the “slay” echoed on Freedia’s “Formation” collab with Beyoncé, and “Bomb” plays like a chest-thump, a nod to all that Freedia’s accomplished.
In fact, it’s hard not to feel Freedia’s presence in pop culture. In addition to high-level appearances on culturally-defining tracks and a string of her own impacting releases, Freedia has become one of the strongest voices from the South, in part thanks to Big Freedia Bounces Back on Fuse TV, a weekly docu-series that’s been on for six seasons and become the network’s highest rated original series.
In addition to living life as a member of the LGBTQ community, she’s consistently used her music to lift listeners of all gender and sexual identity, using music as a bridge to unite. “I’m a voice for different communities,” she says. “Live your life and live the best way you know how. Love whoever you choose to love. Be whoever you want to be, do whatever you want to do. It’s a much broader mission for me to encourage people all over—not just the LGBTQ community but heterosexuals as well to live out they life loud and proud.”
A former choirboy, Freedia cut her teeth on the bounce circuit in New Orleans, quickly garnering national acclaim and becoming a staple on the touring circuit. In the past, she’s dazzled crowds at festivals spanning Outside Lands to FYF, as well as sprinkled her Bounce magic on songs from Diplo, Spank Rock, Galactic and Elliphant. She’s shared her life in other facets of media as well, including the critically-acclaimed memoir Big Freedia: God Save the Queen Diva! on Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster.
But at the core, Bounce music is where Freedia got her start, and where she continues to touch people most. “When people come to visit New Orleans, it’s an infectious city: the culture, the people, the food, the whole city,” she says. “We have so many talented musicians here and people want to taste a little piece of it every time they go somewhere. Bounce is getting ready to keep making a part of history and keep opening doors for the music industry. We are on our rise to people recognizing the music that has been captivating for so long locally here in New Orleans, and now the world has got a taste. It’s just so infectious, baby.”
Naughty Professor is an iconoclastic New Orleans-based jazz-funk sextet whose adventurous recordings and horn-charged, high-energy live performances have earned them an enthusiastic fan base, critical acclaim, and widespread attention from their musical peers.
Their diligent roadwork has established Naughty Professor as a beloved live act. Weaving together complex, inventive compositions and loose, organic improvisation, the band honors their hometown’s jazz, R&B and brass-band traditions while looking to the future.
Naughty Professor raises the stakes on its new album Identity (Release date June 23, 2017). Where their prior four releases showcased the group’s knack for self-contained instrumental experimentation, Identity finds the band teaming with a stellar assortment of more than a dozen cutting-edge collaborators, whose vocal, instrumental and compositional contributions expand the music into new musical territory.
Identity’s prestigious gallery of guests includes Jurassic 5’s Chali 2na, who’s featured on a pair of tracks, “Darker Daze” and “Sugar Coat,” which also features contributions from New Orleans legend Ivan Neville. David Shaw of the Revivalists lends his vocals on “Stray” and singer/guitarist Dexter Gilmore contributes on “I Can’t Sleep At Night.” Additional special collaborators include trumpet player Eric “Benny” Bloom of Lettuce, percussionist Mike Dillon, much-lauded jazz vocalist Sasha Masakowski and members of the renowned New Orleans horn outfit Soul Rebels, who turn up the brass on the album-closer “Funk 4 Lunch.”
“They’re not just guests,” explains Naughty Professor drummer Sam Shahin. “The collaborators on this album were chosen because we respected what they do and felt that they could be a complement to our ensemble.”
“When these kids first started coming up on the scene, I could tell right away that there was something very special about their energy and music,” David Shaw comments on his excitement to collaborate with Naughty Professor. “I believe that the sky has no limit for these boys.”
“My first impression of Naughty Professor was one of amazement,” Chali 2na notes. “New Orleans is full of musicians that are masters of their craft, and Naughty P is no exception. They are also perfectionists and students of the game. This is immediately apparent once you hear them play.
“I am loving the resurgence of jazz combined with this youthful mindstate that musicians have today,” Chali continues,” and Naughty Professor is pushing that envelope.”
The band recorded each track on Identity live in the studio, heightening the immediacy of the performances and solidifying the band’s connection with the guest collaborators. The sessions were also documented on video, with an eye towards releasing a video version of the album.
A wide range of musical impulses has driven Naughty Professor ever since the band members first convened in 2010, having met while students at Loyola University’s jazz program. The musicians’ potent collective chemistry quickly won attention on the New Orleans music scene. After graduating, they began touring, expanding their audience nationwide.
Naughty Professor’s first three albums—2013’s Until the Next Time, 2015’s Out On A Limb and 2016’s live In the Flesh—further raised the band’s national profile. Lauded by critics for having a musical “depth and vision far beyond their young years,” Naughty Professor’s name regularly appears alongside New Orleans’ veteran luminaries. In 2013, the band was nominated by Gambit’ Weekly’s Big Easy Music Awards for “Best Emerging Artist,” and for “Best Funk Band” every year since. Naughty Professor was also nominated in 2015, 2016 and 2017 by Offbeat Magazine’s Best of the Beat Awards for “Best R&B/Funk Artist.” In the magazine’s most recent poll, bassist Noah Young and Drummer Sam Shahin were named finalists as the “Best at their Instruments,” furthering the band’s stellar musical reputation.
Identity continues Naughty Professor’s unyielding exploration of their home city’s eclectic musical landscape. “New Orleans is the reason that we were all able to come together, and it’s the reason we’ve been able to continue making music together,” says alto and baritone saxophonist Nick Ellman. “We all were drawn to the city, and we all have a tremendous respect for the history of the music culture in New Orleans. In no way are we a traditional New Orleans band, and this is not a traditional New Orleans record, but New Orleans’ musical and cultural traditions have everything to do with how we make music.”
New Orleans’ vital spirit is present throughout Identity, which combines artfully-crafted studio creations with material developed through live performance. “We like being adventurous and cerebral, but fun is also important,” Shahin concludes. “We operate with a jazz mentality, but we like verse/chorus structures. We definitely embrace the idea that we’re bridging the gap between the more thought-provoking side of jazz and popular mainstream music, and making the whole thing fun and accessible.”
The result is Identity, Naughty Professor’s most potent and ambitious musical statement to date. It is a record that, by collecting together diverse and disparate musical voices into a seamless whole, simultaneously honors the past and pushes into the future.
Naughty Professor are:
Ian Bowman – tenor saxophone
John Culbreth – trumpet
Bill Daniel – guitar
Nick Ellman – alto and baritone saxophones
Sam Shahin – drums
Noah Young – bass