Funkface, MK Groove Orchestra (Double Set) (Residency), Bryan Dunn, The Velvet Velvets


As the great city of Gotham undergoes its many phases, only one thing remains the same... FunkFace kicks ass .No doubt one of the greatest live rock bands going, FunkFace are the nagging pain in the side of conformity, blending what you know with what you haven’t heard striving to split you in half with sonic fits of joy. So sweet and bitter at the same time .Hard driving grooves uplifting you to melodic chorus peppered with political rants hidden behind sweet come-ons screamed at the top of your lungs.

The five piece unit has been blazin the New York massive for years. Make no mistake about it, They've been around the block, in your mom's house and up the river and down many times over. Lead singer Luqman‘s vocal assault stirs the swarm while the rhythm section Frank beans (bass) 40 oz Jeff (rhythm guitar ) and Ramsey Jones (drums) stagger the senses. Leaving Tim Grove (lead guitar) to ignite the hive into heated frenzy. Hard rock will never be the same; this bands sound has remnants of a punk age, hard rock with a little twist of hip hop, soul and ska. The ultimate fuse, total groove rock. Many have referred to as Soul Core.

Mentioned in Fader magazine and in the Vibe, as the hardest hitting band in the world also featured in the documentary Afro Punk, as leaders of the black rock scene. Plus they are well know around the world as true stage destroyers ask any stage hand or concert carpenters. Still the band genre bending skills are evident in their multicultural look. All the different experience leads to many sounds that become one. FunkFace is posed for the attack and no one will be spared.

FunkFace latest record has all the hard rock you could want, but the addition of a few slow rock ballad open up the band to an area never explored. Still they have created a large symphonic sound a slight throw back to bands like the Verve.

FunkFace have toured and played with many bands like the Distillers, Rage against the Machine, ApolloHeights, Bad Brains, Tribe called Quest, Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Murphy's Law, Fishbone, Peaches, Tv on the Radio, Mike Ladd, and many, many more. Still the best way to experience this poliomyelitis is to shed your fears and succumb to the raging wave that is FunkFace.

MK Groove Orchestra (Double Set) (Residency)

The MK Groove Orchestra is not your grandparents big band, the MKGO is equal parts rock band and jazz band, drawing upon all sounds and cultures that inspire them. Musical omnivores to say the least, depending on what night you see the group, you may be treated to a transcription of a B side from an obscure old school funk 45, the opening theme of a Bruce Lee film, a rendition of a classic recording by a cuban orchestra from the 50s or a classic rock anthem...most likely all of the above. The MKGO's originals also have an equal sense of adventure and breadth, written with clarity and purpose and performed integrity, intensity and virtuosity. Imagine all this...wrapped in face melting guitars.

Bryan Dunn

Bryan Dunn has been performing both solo and in bands in Austin, Tx. and NYC since 1993. The projects have ranged from straightforward rock groups to Irish folk songs and ultimately to Bryan Dunn and the Convenients which combine all the myriad influences into one glorious rock and roll mess. His uncle, who toured in a rock band when he was younger, first taught him how to play guitar when he was 14, and since then, he's been playing and writing songs whether or not anybody was around to listen to them. He devoured 60s rock in high school, especially the Beatles, but after moving to Austin for college, he started listening to anything available in the eclectic music scene there. After moving to NYC and having some success as the front man for Simple Thing and the guitarist for Maggie Kim, he struck out on his own, put together the basic lineup for the Convenients, and plays frequent shows both solo and with the band around the city.

The Velvet Velvets

This spring, protagonists of the short-lived all-star band The Velvet Velvets reunite for a string of East Coast appearances.

Band leader/music director: Chris Pumphrey (Chris Pumphrey Sextet, The Financial Group, Baltimore Afrobeat Society)
Lead Vocals: Kristen Toedtman (founding Queen of the Baltimore Afrobeat Society)
Lead Vocals: Michael Flanagan Smith (Woody Dreams Before Dying).
Lead Vocals: Abby Mott (the Baltimore Afrobeat Society, the Real Geniuses)

The group is a dynamo of vocals with on-stage charisma to spare. The Velvet Velvets share song-writing duties and pass the microphone for rousing covers of the Zombies, Nina Simone, and other deep cut artists. Pumphrey has rehearsed up a backing band of Baltimore's finest for the just-announced tour with new songs.

The Velvet Velvets first came together for playwright and songwriter Smith's 24 hour play festival: Smalltimore. Billed as the Smalltimorchestra, the group served as house band and proved to be a powerhouse of vocals, catchy melodies and soaring rock-pop goodness. Before they knew it, they had shows booked for months out. They quickly chose more velvety name and kept the party going.

Mott and Toedtman, who sold out the Patterson Theater for their homecoming show in 2010 ("The Gals Come Home"), outdid themselves each performance with different outfits (performing several times in roller skates!). The band split up when Smith and Toedtman left town to direct and music-direct (respectively) a Robert Anton Wilson play in Los Angeles. Shortly after, Mott left for the Philippines to write about the sea. She now resides in Austin, Texas working as a recording artist and producer. Toedtman stayed in Los Angeles where she performs her own music as well as singing and playing bass with The Brendan Hines, with whom she toured the east coast this past September. Smith lives in Brooklyn, just coming off a successful off-broadway run of his play "Woody Guthrie Dreams Before Dying." Chris Pumphrey kills it every single week in Baltimore as a sought-after arranger, musical director, composer, key and horn player, and musical mystic.


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