Beats Antique

It’s impossible to describe Beats Antique using just a single genre. One listen to their
forthcoming album, Shadowbox (released on their own Beats Antique Records imprint),
and their unique hybrid of sound makes perfect sense; their ability to blend so many
different kinds of music in to an incredibly vibrant, distinctive and peerless album is what
this band has been doing for the past ten years.
Based in Oakland, California, Sidecar Tommy, David Satori and Zoe Jakes make up
Beats Antique, who released their 10th album on October 5th 2016 to commemorate their
tenth year as a band. They’ve mounted a larger-than-life cross-country tour that will take
their vision to theaters across America. “Shadowbox is both the title of our new album, the
theme of our tour, and our new store front in Berkeley CA. We decided to bring it all
together on this release.“
Mostly recorded at their studio in Oakland (which has been around since the 50s), the
Bay Area band also recorded in Russia and Israel. “We were lucky to record in both
Moscow and Tel Aviv, because we had shows there and wanted to connect with the local
artists. We had amazing sessions in both locations; In Moscow we recorded on the
outskirts of the city in a wild Industrial complex. We ended up going through strange
corridors into this plush bamboo-floored-Hare-Krishna-owned recording studio with state
of the art gear. When we were in Tel Aviv, we gave a call to a local legend Yossi Fine and
he helped us get time at Pluto Studios, which is one of the best in the city. We recorded
with Talya Solan and her amazing group of musicians. We used elements of the Tel Aviv
session to create our track “Bdna Salam,” which is raising money for Syrian refugees.”
Along with Talya other features on Shadowbox include Lafa Taylor, Alam Khan, Tatiana
Kalmykova, brasshouse trio Too Many Zooz (who are touring with Beats Antique),
Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Dana Elle, Madoline Tasquin and Medium Troy Orchestra.
Shadowbox is a retrospective of sorts, with Beats Antique pulling from all of their previous
work as almost a homage to the first ten years of their career. “This will be our first full
album produced in Beats Antique’s recording studio/dance performance space. We feel
like Shadowbox touches on all our styles from down-temp Middle Eastern influences to

cinematic orchestral arrangements. The songwriting process is also different for every
song. Sometimes David will come in with a melody and Sidecar will add the bass and
beats, and vise versa. One thing that always makes the songwriting process unique is
that Zoe creates and arranges music based around stories she wants to tell though
dance, so sometimes the performance aspect influences the creation of the music.”
In June, the group premiered the first single, “Killer Bee,” featuring Lafa Taylor,
on The track is “about standing up to prejudices. Just because someone
calls you a killer bee, doesn’t mean you need to kill. We want people to define themselves
and not be defined by what people think they should be.” In addition to being a ‘killer’
track, with a compelling music video directed by Kyrian Bobeerian, Beats Antique
donated a percentage of the proceeds from their July 1st show at Red Rocks
Amphitheatre to The Honeybee Conservancy, a non-profit dedicated to raising awareness
about the importance of bees.
An enthusiastic touring band, a new album also means a new tour, and since Beats
Antique is all about the ‘concept,’ Shadowbox (the album and the idea) is another
opportunity for them to get the creative juices flowing for the live shows. The band plan to
use shadows, light, Indonesian shadow puppetry, custom-created lanterns, dance, story
telling, crowd participation and more to make sure this is an unforgettable visual spectacle
for their audience.
Shadowbox, an album that is an amalgamation of the history of Beats Antique, merged
with a tour that will both tease and excite the senses, shows off what this band does best
– transform, innovate and revolutionize what you think you know about music.

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