Goldenvoice & Wagatail Present
Karl Denson's Tiny Universe presents A Ray Charles Boogaloo Dance Party! with Anders Osborne & Zach Deputy
5515 Wilshire Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA, 90036
Karl Denson's Tiny Universe
Karl Denson has led a storied career as a multi-faceted recording and performing artist who first came to prominence as a member of Lenny Kravitz’ band debuting on his first release, Let Love Rule, and staying on for the next five years. While developing a following overseas, he joined Fred Wesley’s band, touring and recording with him on multiple releases. This led to five straight ahead jazz albums by Denson on Minor Music, the last of which was released to rave reviews and featured Karl in a trio setting with Miles Davis alumni Dave Holland and Jack DeJohnette. In 1993, Denson joined DJ Greyboy in creating Greyboy Records and released the legendary acid jazz staple, Freestylin. Out of that collaboration, Denson formed The Greyboy Allstars, which became world renowned as the ultimate groove band, spreading their “West Coast Boogaloo” style worldwide.
Denson took this formula to the next level by putting more emphasis on vocals and adding some funk, R&B and hip hop elements. It turned out to be a winning combination, which set KDTU on the top of the heap in the touring world from 1999 through 2005, selling over 250,000 records to date. “My style is based in dance” shares Denson. “ I love the idea of creating something that naturally makes people want to move.” KDTU has headlined and performed at US Festivals including Bonnaroo, Bumbershoot, The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, All Good Music Festival, Wakarusa Music Festival, Playboy Jazz Festival, Monterey Jazz Festival, Newport Jazz Festival and many more. Global festival appearances include the Fuji Rock Festival in Japan, North Sea Jazz festival in Holland, Moscow Jazz Festival in Russia, East Coast Blues and Roots Festival in Australia and the Montreux Jazz festival in Switzerland. Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe has shared the stage with acts as diverse as Jack Johnson, D’Angelo, James Brown, Dave Matthews Band, Michael Franti & Spearhead, The Allman Brothers, Keene and Maroon 5.
Denson’s latest release, Brother’s Keeper, continues his artistic evolution fusing sounds from Rock to Funk to Afrobeat. Meshell Ndegeocello (bass) and Marc Ford (guitar, Black Crowes, Ben Harper) are just some of the special guests on the album. Denson notes, “I’m not one to live in the past. I am very much a forward thinker. Brother’s Keeper is a continuation of my general worldview, which is that we should be loving each other, having fun and taking care of one another.” He concludes, “This record is the culmination of all my life’s work up until now.”
Recorded at the famed Dockside Studio in Maurice, Louisiana, BLACK EYE GALAXY was produced by Anders along with engineer Warren Riker and Galactic's Stanton Moore. Sounds on the album range from heavy electric mayhem to joyous acoustic melodicism, lyrics move from the darkest depths to the healing power of love. Black Eye Galaxy is a personal record for Osborne, but one with universal themes.
The album is a journey of sorts, following the main character (based on Anders' own life experiences) from the uncontrolled, primal chaos of "Send Me A Friend" to the inner peace of "Higher Ground." The disjointed and brutally honest "Mind Of A Junkie" leads into the warm and hopeful "Lean On Me/Believe In You." The gentle "When Will I See You Again?" finds Anders rebuilding broken relations, while the feral and confrontational "Black Tar" (co-written with Little Feat's Paul Barrere) says farewell to a dark past. The final four songs — "Tracking My Roots," "Louisiana Gold," "Dancing In The Wind," and "Higher Ground" — bring an almost ecstatic tranquility after the intense stress and turbulence of the beginning of the album. From ultra-heavy and challenging to sweetly soul-soothing and melodic, Osborne's guitar work, like his vocals, is simply mesmerizing. Black Eye Galaxy is a harrowing but ultimately uplifting cycle of richly detailed songs that are musically and lyrically thought-provoking, exhilarating and completely engaging.
In the studio and in concert, Anders channels the music throughout his entire body, becoming a whirling dervish of pure energy. BLURT says, "This is modern music at its transcendent best." PASTE adds, "He is wildly diverse, thoughtful and raw." With BLACK EYE GALAXY, Osborne's star has exploded into the universe, fully formed and spinning freely in its own unique direction.
On his latest release Another Day (Eusonia Records, 2011), Zach Deputy demonstrates his extraordinary ability to perform and record in multiple contexts. He conveys the sensibilities of a mature singer/songwriter and demonstrates that he is not merely a "looper"1 with crazy chops, serious pipes and colorful outfits. Another Day offers another look at Zach Deputy and seeks to help him cross over into other audiences. Rich with ballads and mid-tempo songs, the music on this recording is best described as soulful rhythm and blues, with flavors of Al Green, Taj Mahal and Stevie Wonder emerging in the swells, changes and modulations of the music, in the voice and even in the lyrical content. The record will appeal to fans of contemporary artists like Jack Johnson and Amos Lee, but the origins of the style and feel remain classic.
Recorded over 5 days in August, 2009 at Mission Sound Recording in Brooklyn, NY, Another Day emerged as a warm, mellow album, one that is perfect for after hour soirees and sunsets. It is possible that the only benefit to recording with a limited budget in a small window of time is that the raw essence of the session is not stripped away by weeks or months of second guessing and revision. The instincts and experience of the players is critical in sessions like this, and producer Scott Jacoby chose the right guys to fill out the sound and vibe of the record.
To handle the ever-present Latin, Caribbean and African elements in Zach Deputy's backbeat and place them in the contemporary soul / pop format of the songs, Jacoby tapped Graham Hawthorne (Aretha Franklin, Harry Belafonte, Joan Osborne, Paul Simon, David Byrne) for the drum kit. Bassist Al Carty came into the studio and explained to Deputy's manager that he was feeling a little scattered, as he had played four church gigs that day. Despite the list of artists he has recorded or toured with (Lou Reed, Rob Thomas, Alicia Keys, De La Soul, Carrie Underwood, Gavin DeGraw, Me'shell Ndegeocello, Ashanti and more), the church gigs alone proved that Jacoby was on the mark with this choice for the low end. Zach Deputy is, after all, a soul singer whose music is underpinned by Gospel as much as by any other musical idiom. Equally at home in the Gospel tradition, pianist / organist Will Buthod (Jay-Z, Fat Joe, Alicia Keys, Swizz Beatz, Mashonda, The Harlem Gospel Choir) rounded out the studio trio that filled out Deputy's vision for the recording, a vision made real by Jacoby's pitch perfect choice of accompanists. These four accomplished professionals met for the first time on the first day of recording and worked as if they were old friends with a shared history and a common purpose.
In contrast to the music and feel of Another Day, Zach Deputy has made his mark thus far as a touring powerhouse.
As a boy, the music of Zach Deputy's Puerto Rican, Cruzan and Irish heritage was cooked up in the South Carolina heat. The Calypso rhythms and folk songs of St. Croix competed with the R&B / soul of pioneers like James Brown and Ray Charles for space on the family stereo. As Deputy honed his craft, a unique hybrid of these influences emerged, ultimately creating the signature Zach Deputy sound. To bring this sound to the stage, the big, impossibly upbeat South Carolinian with the infectious smile puts on a solo show-- enhanced by looping technology-- that is essentially a one man dance party offering up what he calls "Island-infused, Drum 'n' Bass, Gospel-Ninja-Soul" to the enthusiastic crowds of dancers who flock to clubs from coast-to-coast. It is these late night dance parties—more than 250 per year-- that have made Zach Deputy one of the hottest up-and-coming performers on the camping festival circuit and "jam band" scene.
Of course, artists are seldom content to stay in one place artistically, and Zach was looking to collaborate with somebody on a more "produced", even somewhat "urban" sounding record. When Zach's manager first turned Grammy Award winning producer Scott Jacoby on to some of Zach's more funky, upbeat live performances, Jacoby simply didn't hear it. The one-man-band live looping show features a more simplified version of Deputy's music, and Jacoby was looking for songs, structure, changes, hooks, choruses… stuff that is nearly impossible to do by one's self on stage with a nylon string Godin acoustic guitar, a handful of mics and a bunch of looping technology. Zach simply showed up at Jacoby's studio with his acoustic guitar and sang a few songs and Jacoby was inspired—the urban-oriented dance album they had discussed was going to have to wait: he and Zach were now going to make what they called a "Ray Lamontagne" kind of record and the result is Another Day.
For Zach, most days begin in a hotel room and end a couple of hours after walking off stage, leaving a packed house of sweaty dancers calling for more. The constant touring and the compelling live show may be the key to Zach's success on the road, but it is an unlikely inspiration for Another Day, as there is little similarity between what fans have come to expect from Zach and what is offered up in this new record. Thus, Another Day is an appropriately titled album, and it is truly an album in the classic sense—a collection of songs that come from the same time and place, inspired by the same muse. Reflective and introspective, it provides a glimpse at the soul of an artist and the depth of a songwriter. Full of hope and anticipation of the promise of another day, a new day, it is a pivotal point in the career of a touring musician. Whereas it is a departure for Zach Deputy, it is one that he feels confident his fans can relate to, but it isn't the end in itself. Deputy's multi-faceted diamond gets one side polished in this offering, and it is a side that will shine brightly for a new audience.