At SXSW 2010 in Austin, TX, Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings rocked the house. They brought a 3-piece horn section — two saxophones and a trumpet — on one end of the stage, with a swaying guitar section on the other end. At one point Sharon Jones pulled a random man from the audience and sang to him as they danced together on stage. Later, she did a call and response with the crowd, getting everyone to sing along with her.
The group already had an impressive resume. Their first album together came out in 2002 — released, like their two albums to follow, on the independent label Daptone Records. Ever since, Jones and her dynamite nine-piece band haven't slowed down, playing world-class venues as well as almost every major U.S. music festival. At 53, Jones is as prominent and hard-working as ever, maintaining a relentless touring schedule and building a reputation for stupendous live shows.
The group's classic soul sound comes with an energetic, punchy edge. Just a few weeks after this SXSW performance, the band will release its rollicking fourth album, I Learned the Hard Way. Recorded entirely on a vintage 8-track at Daptone Studios, the album is a bold and winning follow-up to 2007's 100 Days, 100 Nights.
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Long live the King of Pop!
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"This live set from the summer of 2007 finds famed ex-James Brown horn man Maceo Parker cutting loose with Germany’s incredible WDR Big Band. The concert shoots the intensity up several notches with Parliament-Funkadelic alumni Dennis Chambers (drums) and Rodney "Skeet" Curtis (bass) driving the energy to uncommonly soulful and sweaty peaks. The concept of playing hard funk with a brassy big band in tow is somewhat unusual, but the results smash all preconceptions. Parker’s dueling alto battle with Karolina Strassmayer on "To Be or Not to Be" and a rousing 17-minute version of the J.B.’s classic "Pass the Peas" are just a few highlights of this rollicking, electrifying set."
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