The Gold Magnolias

Once upon a time there was Dan and Hud--two young rapscallions growing up in Austin, Texas and taking full-advantage of the city's rich musical culture. Meanwhile in the North East corner of Louisiana, Evan Felts was learning his first chords on the guitar from his daddy. "Saxman" Ryan Anselmi was whistling through brass and playin' Blues and Jazz in Kansas City. And over in Raleigh, NC baby Jeff Barton was seriously wailin' on some pots and pans.

In New York City round-about 2009 is where it all came together: a bunch of Southern boys fighting their way through the noise. The Gold Magnolias went from seed to sprout in the rich soil of Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn. Open mic at Goodbye Blue Monday turned into a weekly gig at Soul2Soul right in the heart of funky Broadway. After about 6 months of Tuesdays the Magnolias had a pretty solid group of tunes together and started expanding their reach: St. Lucian Paradise every Thursday playing for PBR an chicken wings, Sans Souci every sunday playing for curried goat and mac and cheese. Then on to some of the city's finest venues: the Shrine in Harlem, and Rockwood Music Hall on the Lower East Side.

In May of 2011, The Magnolias released their eponymous debut recording. The album was recorded at the Magnolia Motel to 1/4" tape and captures the intensity of the bands' concerts. It highlights the group's original songs. The sound evokes such artists as recent phenoms The Alabama Shakes as well as soul-stalwarts like Fats Domino and James Brown.

In recent months, the Magnolias have been taking their spit-shined act on the road: Pigfest in Talla Bena, the Burlington Jazz Festival in VT and an opening spot for Tower of Power at the Paola Blues and Roots festival.

They've also recently released their first music video directed by Todd Rocheford which garnered over 2,500 views in the first week.

The sparks are flying. It's just a matter of time before these Magnolias explode. Be there when they do!

The New Riddim

Project H

2012 was the most successful year to date for The Project H! This seven-piece instrumental outfit has shared the stage with national acts: The Bad Plus, Rebirth Brass Band, Big Sam, Yojimbo, and Snarky Puppy. The Project H traveled to New Orleans to play for a packed house at the legendary Howlin' Wolf during the first weekend of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. The Project H was able to show off it's versatility by playing at rock clubs, festivals, coffee shops, dive bars and jazz clubs with reggae acts, hard rock bands, bluegrass groups, rappers, funk groups and indie rock bands. The group was asked to play for the Major League Baseball All-Star Fan Fest during All-Star week in Kansas City. The group was also nominated for it's first Pitch Music Award for "Best Jazz Ensemble."

These performances were in support of the group's studio recording, "Become Light." The release features nine original songs by trombonist, Ryan Heinlein that are sure to keep your mind and feet intrigued. "Become Light" was named the second best jazz release in Kansas City in 2012 by the Plastic Sax blog. The guy that got first (Pat Methany), won a Grammy.

As an educational outlet, The Project H was able to give clinics to several colleges, high schools and middle schools in Missouri and Kansas. The group was able to perform for these students, work with their bands, give sectionals and masterclasses. Topics included but were not limited to: choosing colleges, basics of improvisation, composing, finding your voice, becoming a professional musician, moving to a new city and networking.

2013 is starting off just as strong. The Project H has opened up for two national touring acts from New Orleans, Cliff Hines and Gravity A. The band also arranged all twenty songs from Beck's newest project, Song Reader. The debut of Beck's Song Reader sold out the Record Bar in Kansas City. The Project H has been asked to play at the Cotillion Ballroom with Monophonics in Wichita, Kansas. The Project H is currently writing new music in preparation for it's third release, due out next Spring.

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