E/C Presents: The Return of Patrick Sweany
The Problems, Elli Smith and The Commotion
1531 Grand Blvd.
Kansas City, MO, 64108
Doors 8:00 PM / Show 8:30 PM
This event is 18 and over
Watch & Listen
Patrick Sweany likes the spaces in between.
On a given night (or on a given album) he'll swing through blues, folk, soul, bluegrass, maybe some classic 50s rock, or a punk speedball. He's a musical omnivore, devouring every popular music sound of the last 70 years, and mixing 'em all together seamlessly into his own stew. Yet, the one thing that most people notice about Patrick isn't his ability to copy - it's his authenticity. Like his heroes, folks like Bobby "Blue" Bland, Eddie Hinton, Doug Sahm, Joe Tex, Patrick somehow manages to blend all of these influences into something all his own.
It's no wonder that as a kid he immersed himself in his dad's extensive record collection: 60s folk, vintage country, soul, and, of course, blues. Patrick spent hours teaching himself to fingerpick along to Leadbelly, Lightnin' Hopkins, and other folk-blues giants.
In his late teens, Patrick began playing the clubs and coffeehouses around Kent, OH. He quickly gained a reputation for the intricate country blues style he was developing: part Piedmont picking, part Delta slide - with an equally impressive deep, smooth vocal style.
It wasn't long before Pat drew the attention of other notables like Jimmy Thackery who was impressed enough to bring Pat on the road, and Roy Book Binder, who, after hearing Patrick's self-released debut CD I Wanna Tell You, arranged his first appearance at Merlefest in 2002. Book Binder also turned his longtime friend Jorma Kaukonen on to Patrick's music, landing Pat a perennial slot at the legendary Fur Peace Ranch alongside guitarists like GE Smith, Marjorie Thompson, Bill Kirchen and Bob Margolin.
But Pat wouldn't stay in the acoustic world for long. His love of 50s era soul and rock fused with the adrenaline-soaked garage punk revival happening throughout the Rust Belt pushed Pat to form a band.
After 3 critically acclaimed CDs (the last two produced by longtime collaborator Dan Auerbach of The Black Keys), Patrick has expanded his touring radius to 49 states and the UK. He's played premiere festivals all over the U.S., and supported national acts such as The Black Keys, The Gourds, The Wood Brothers, Sonny Landreth, Hot Tuna, and Paul Thorn on tour.
His latest record, That Old Southern Drag, hit the streets February 15, 2011. It was recorded to 2" tape in Nasheville, TN (Patrick's new home) and features contributions from Joe McMahan (Allsion Moorer, Webb Wilder, Mike Farris), Scott McEwan (Tarbox Ramblers), Tim Marks (Will Kimbrough, Taylor Swift), and Chris West (The Dynamites), among others. Southern Drag expands Patrick's roots music palette without losing his signature Deep Blues sound.
New York City transplant, moves to Kansas City to continue the rock & roll tradition. Already making a name for himself, Borgia forms The Problems. A band that delivers alternative blues and rock , with all the mass appeal one could ask for without losing all musical integrity.
Elli Smith and The Commotion
From the day she was born, Ellie Arilyn Smith must have been under the impression that she was in a race. Though she’s just barely 18 years old, Ellie has demonstrated again and again her prowess as a singer and a songwriter. She can hammer down with so much soul it will shake your bones, just as easily as she can deliver the subtle lyrical content she’s become known for that leaves you lying in a puddle of your drink of choice on the bar-room floor laughing all of your breath away.
Ellie’s father and bassist Kenny Smith who has paid his dues playing music for over 40 years, keeps the gents in line so his daughter can focus on delivering a performance so good it’s almost offensive. With Kenny governing the low end, David Liston laying down a solid funky beat, and the eccentric string-singing Ryan Verthein on guitar, this outfit cranks out blues, soul, rock and whatever else they feel like playing and you feel like hearing, mixing their tastefully selected covers with Ellie and the band's smoking hot originals.
Spend some time listening to Ellie Smith and the Commotion, and you’ll forget all about the Etta James, the Tab Benoit, the Susan Tedeschi and the Jonny Lang that Smith is so fond of belting out. The only thing you’ll you'll want, is more Ellie.