Shuggie Otis

Shuggie Otis

Irony is a part of life. Though the music business may at times have nothing to do with "real" life, irony is a part of the biz. Just ask singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Shuggie Otis. Shuggie Otis, for those not familiar with him through David Byrne's heroic disinterment of his 1974 album, Inspiration Information or through his authorship of the wonderful Strawberry Letter 23 – is the son of legendary R 'n' B bandleader Johnny Otis. A musical prodigy he was playing with his father by the time he was 13 and from the word go displayed an uncanny mastery of the blues guitar.

He wrote "Strawberry Letter 23," a gold single for the Brothers Johnson that went to number one R&B and number five pop in spring 1977. George Johnson was dating one of Otis' cousins who gave him a copy of Otis' 1971 Epic LP, Freedom Flight. Immediately, Johnson liked "Ice Cold Daydream" and "Strawberry Letter 23." The duo recommended it to their producer, Quincy Jones, and recorded a cover version that sticks pretty close to Otis' original version of "Strawberry Letter 23." By the time "Strawberry Letter 23" was a million-seller, Otis had been dropped from Epic three years earlier. The 24-year-old guitar virtuoso was sure he would get a new record deal. Ironically, the record executives would be impressed that he wrote a million-selling song, but they weren't interested in anything else he'd done. Disillusioned, Otis dropped out of the music business before returning to it in the late '80s, playing with his father, Johnny Otis' band. Later the axiom "good things come to those who wait" took effect. Spurred by sales and critical kudos of reissues of his 1974 Epic LP, Inspiration Information, from Sony Music Special Projects and David Byrne's Luaka Bop label, Otis performed "Strawberry Letter 23" on May 2001 appearances on Conan O'Brien and David Letterman.

Though in recent years he has chosen to remain out of the spotlight, he continues to be revered through musical circles, as evidenced by his 2009 performance with Mos Def in LA (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdalGmtuiYg).

Jesca Hoop calls her stunning sophomore album "the first time I've ever really invested in myself." And she means that literally: After recording the nine-track disc in Los Angeles with veteran producer Tony Berg (Michael Penn, Aimee Mann, Nickel Creek), the northern California native packed her bags and decamped for England, where last year she released Hunting My Dress independently to an avalanche of acclaim from both the U.K. press and fellow artists such as Guy Garvey of Elbow. "That was the first time I really took control of my own life," Hoop says, "and had enough faith to put not just my talent but my money toward running a campaign."

Fans of Hoop's 2007 debut, Kismet, already knew about the singer's talent. A favorite of former KCRW tastemaker Nic Harcourt (who regularly featured Hoop on the public-radio station's influential "Morning Becomes Eclectic"), Kismet announced the arrival of a unique new voice, one with a flair (as the Los Angeles Times put it) for "darkly seductive, genre-bending songs that dabble in everything from folk and pop to dub and cabaret." Three years later, Hoop calls Hunting My Dress "a more clarified distillation of what I do as an artist. I'm closer to home in my expression on this record," she continues. "I used less to express more."

Expression is key for Hoop, whose adventurous songwriting and idiosyncratic vocals have earned favorable comparisons to such cutting-edge forbears as Björk, Kate Bush and Joni Mitchell. "Those women inspired a generation, and I'm of that generation," Hoop acknowledges. "I'm trying to get to what's innately mine. My heroes set this example for me. My only aim is to be just like myself."

DJ Platurn

If you don't know, you'd better ask somebody: DJ Platurn lives music. An 18 year veteran of the DJ game, his career has seen him rock parties worldwide including engagements throughout Asia, Australia, Europe, Canada, South America, Scandinavia, and countless venues in his home base of Northern California. He is a DJ adamant on sharing the world's music with the music lovers within, a mission he's proudly been succeeding at since he first threw down as a teenager.

The 80's and 90's brought him to Hip-Hop, Hip-Hop brought him to the samples, the samples brought him to love and appreciation, and he brings all of these to the table when he steps behind the decks. His selection skills and ability to turn any venue into a "OOOOHHH SNAP!" fest have earned him a devoted following with those who share his passions for the art form of spinning and great music. He's bringing it to the people because he knows they deserve it.

In 2013 DJ Platurn will leave no party unrocked. You'll want to be there to see it.

$25.00 - $40.00

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Shuggie Otis with JESCA HOOP, DJ Platurn

Friday, April 26 · 9:00 PM at Mezzanine

Off Sale