News

CukoRakko Pre-Party Will Feature Downright, Supatight, & Shabti September 29, 2017 14:06

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Photo by Craig Baird: Home Team Photography
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Share this Facebook post + tag a friend in the comments for a chance to win two passes to the pre-party. These passes are for Thursday only and still require a weekend pass. Pre-party tickets can be purchased at the gate upon arrival.
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It's that time of the year again, and we are just a mere number of days away from one of our favorite weekends of the year: CukoRakko Music & Arts Festival. Now in its fourth year, the bi-annual grassroots festival continues to grow at one of Alabama's most beautiful locations: Horse Pens 40. While you can enjoy three full days of music, mixed media art, yoga, disc golf, kid's activities and more, the Thursday night pre-party has proven itself to be one of the weekend highlights.
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The setting and boulder-laden backdrop of the CukoRakko main stage is second to none, but don't sleep on the intimate vibe at the pavilion stage. The pre-party concept has now evolved into an evening with three of the southeast's premier acts: DownrightSupatight, and Shabti. A Thursday arrival allows one to camp virtually anywhere on site, ease in to the weekend ahead, and enjoy three jam-packed sets with an intimate group of the CukoRakko family. 
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CukoRakko is the Creek Indian word for ceremonial ground, stomp ground, big house and dance ground. This perfectly describes the phenomenal energy that can be felt at this historic outdoor nature park. Horse Pens 40 is a natural wonderland of unique rock formations nestled atop Chandler Mountain in the foothills of the Appalachians. Located on top of the third highest mountain in Alabama, the stone formations here are said to be among the oldest naturally exposed stones in the world, dating from 600 million to 1.3 billion years old. This sacred ground has a vivid history. Don’t miss this opportunity to visit this incredible natural amphitheater.
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Meet The Pre-Party Bands:

Downright (Birmingham, AL)

Watch Downright perform "The Dirt" here:
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Supatight (Asheville, NC)

Watch Supatight perform "Puddin' Foot" here:

Shabti

Watch Shabti's official video for "Canvas of Clay" here:


CukoRakko Confirms Stellar Lineup For 2017 Fall Fest September 13, 2017 10:52

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Photo by Craig Baird: Home Team Photography
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Share this post directly from the Live & Listen Facebook page and tag a friend in the comments for a chance to win a pair of CukoRakko tickets. Make sure your settings are set to 'public' so we can see the shared post on our end.

Festival organizers have revealed the final lineup for CukoRakko Music & Arts Festival, which returns Horse Pens 40 in Steele, AL for the fourth consecutive year on October 6th - 8th and will presented by Land Rover of Birmingham. The bi-annual, family friendly, grassroots music and arts festival has seen tremendous growth with each year, and this fall looks to be no exception. FallFest will feature arguably the festival's exciting lineup to date with BIG Something, The Heavy Pets, Backup PlanetFreekbass & The Bump Assembly, lespecial, Mr. B & The Tribal Hoose, Winston Ramble, Downright, Supatight, The Stolen Faces, Shabti, Jon Poor Band, Goat Hill String Band, and Jason Grubbs & Friends.  VIP ticket packages and advance general admission tickets can also be found at CukoRakko.com. This is a one-of-a-kind camping experience at one of Alabama's best kept secrets. Stay tuned for future festival updates, exclusive artist interviews, and everything you need to know about CukoRakko!
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CukoRakko offers so much more than just the music. Don't miss out on Get Rhythm's organized drum circles throughout the weekend. Get Rhythm is an interactive rhythm program which uses hand drums and percussion instruments from around the world with the goal of unity through rhythm. Programs range from educational, team building, leadership, or stress relief.
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John Scalici is an award winning teaching artist, author, internationally recognized facilitator, musician, and a member of the John C. Maxwell Team of certified speakers, coaches, and trainers. His Rhythm of Leadership® and Unity Through Rhythm® programs are in high demand and highly regarded at leading corporations, college campuses, elementary, middle and high schools across the U.S. 
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Photo by Craig Baird: Home Team Photography
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-Get To Know This Year's Lineup!
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BIG Something

A 6 piece powerhouse with a sound that is both unique and timeless, BIG Something fuses elements of rock, pop, funk, and improvisation to take listeners on a journey through a myriad of musical styles. It's no secret why this group has quickly become one of the most exciting new bands to emerge from the Southeast. Soaring guitars, synths, horns and alluring vocal hooks rise to the top of their infectious collection of songs and represent a sound that has caught the ears of such revered Summer circuit stalwarts as Galactic, moe., Robert Randolph, and even The B52s who have all tapped Big Something as direct support.

This past February the group released their 4th full-length studio album, Tumbleweed, which was recorded once again with the help of grammy nominated producer John Custer (Corrosion of Conformity). He has produced all of their albums including Truth Serum, which was named 2014 Album of the Year by The Homegrown Music Network, making Big Something the only band ever to win this award 3 times with 3 different releases (2010, 2013, and 2014).

Watch BIG Something perform "The Flood" with Jake Cinninger of Umphrey's McGee here:

The Heavy Pets

The Heavy Pets are a funky-ass rock and roll band from South Florida. Called "a living, breathing force of nature" by Relix magazine, they are known for their songcraft and powerhouse live performances. The band has been a mainstay on the national touring circuit for over a decade, and will release its fourth full-length studio album in September 2017.

The Pets are a seasoned live act, playing over 1200 shows across the country since their inception in 2005. The band's energetic, extended sets have been described as "full blown musical salvation" that embodies the sound of their Florida home, weaving together elements of indie rock, funk and reggae into a style that is uniquely their own.

The group became an instant Sirius radio sensation upon the release of their debut album Whale in 2007. The crossover sound on their self-titled release, named a "Top 10 Album of 2010" by The Huffington Post, propelled them into the periphery of mainstream music. 2011 saw the release of Swim Out Past The Sun, an acoustic affair featuring longtime Jerry Garcia collaborator David Grisman. Beginning in 2013, The Heavy Pets put out a series of EPs recorded at the legendary Power Station studios, and will release its fourth full-length album in September 2017.

Watch The Heavy Pets perform "Dewpoint" > "Jackie Bones" here:

Backup Planet

Rock ‘n’ roll epitomizes escapism in its purest form. It’s not just artistic anesthetization either, but rather a galvanizing force that inspires us to keep pushing through life’s trials and tribulations. That’s why we still listen to Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Pink Floyd, Rush, and countless others all these years later. It’s the same reason audiences will be talking about Backup Planet’s second full-length album, Reactions, for a long time to come. The Nashville, TN quartet—Ben Cooper [keys, vocals], Chris Potocik [drums, vocals], Gavin Donati [guitar, vocals], and Blake Gallant [bass, vocals]—write arena-size anthems echoing with progressive intricacy, funk swagger, and even a little metallic edge. Giving listeners an inspiring and invigorating aural haven, their moniker couldn’t be more apropos…

Watch Backup Planet perform David Bowie's "Fame" here:

Freekbass

Born and raised in Cincinnati, OH, Freekbass was an only child who initially wanted to be a magician. He later developed his own obsession for cartoon superheroes and comic books, relating to the underlying themes.

Living in Cincinnati exposed Freekbass to genres of music he may have missed otherwise. While most kids were listening to Nirvana and Green Day, he connected with the bottom-heavy sounds coming out of the boom boxes like Zapp and Midnight Star. While working in a music shop to pay off his first electric bass he had in lay-away, he began to study the classics of Larry Graham, Sly Stone, Stevie Wonder, Parliament and Bootsy with a bass in one hand, and an MPC2000 in the other.

Freekbass has released six full-length CDs, including “Concentrate” with guests Bootsy Collins, DJ Spooky, Adam Deitch, and Steve Molitz, and “Junkyard Waltz” which includes guest appearances by Phish bassist Mike Gordon, guitarist Buckethead, keyboard wizard from P-Funk/Talking Heads Bernie Worrell, and is produced by funk legend Bootsy Collins. Also, national music DVD instruction company, The Rock House Method, recently released two Freekbass instructional DVDs “Learn Funk Bass with Freekbass (Level 1 & Level 2) “, and TrueFire.com just released the instructional DVD/download “50 Freekbass Licks You Must Know” . In 2010 Freekbass connected with DJ Logic, and Particle keyboardist Steve Molitz to form the funktronica trio, Headtronics. 

Going into 2015 Freek has a lot of things on the table. He just released his next album , “Everybody’s Feelin’ Real”, which is produced by Duane Lundy (My Morning Jacket’s Jim James/Ben Sollee) and includes P-Funk/Rubberband keyboardist Razor Sharp Johnson, horn man Skerik, and Trey Anastasio Band vocalist/trumpet Jennifer Hartswick . Also, he was a part of this year’s London Bass Guitar Show in the UK giving a master class and performing. Plus he will be doing extensive touring with his mainstay funk group, “Freekbass & The Bump Assembly” which also includes funk legend Razor Sharp Johnson on keys/synths and George Clinton & P-Funk alumni Rico Lewis on drums. And recently, he signed with the esteemed label Ropeadope Records.

Watch Freekbass' music video for "Mama's Like A Cowboy" here:

lespecial

Hailed as a breakthrough act to watch in 2017, lespecial, based in Boston and upstate New York, have established themselves as innovators and tastemakers on their own unique trajectory. “Disguised as an average power trio from Boston, lespecial creeps around corners and reaches into the darkest depths of the absurd. lespecial is meticulous, creative and defiant; eclectic, multi-talented and driven. The band prides itself in extending the boundaries of musical ability, rebelliously laying waste to the limits of popular music.” (Ragin Randy Entertainment)

Labeled with such unique descriptions as “dark future groove” or “death funk” to “trance metal” or “haunted house party music”, it is tough to put one’s finger on this dangerous and determined trifecta’s distinct sound. A lespecial set brings their signature blend of psychedelic metal infused funk along with deep, thumping synths and 808s that will have your hips swaying as quick as your head banging. From the band’s origins as three friends in high school in the woods of Connecticut who shared a passion for building unique instruments and hitting them with drum sticks, through studying music at a collegiate level to now running their own music school and studio, The Music Cellar, in Millerton NY, Jonny Grusauskas (guitar/synth/sampler/percussion/vocals), Luke Bemand (bass/synth/percussion) and Rory Dolan’s (drums/samples) unique chemistry is what gives them their incomparable personality.

As Steve Morse, Boston Globe writer and Berklee College of Music professor, claims, “They are virtuoso players- and they really listen to each other closely, which is what raises them apart from today’s progressive wannabees”. After several, eclectic EP releases, their debut album, “Omnisquid”, released in 2015, finds the band “jumping through periods of hypnotic rhythms, catchy riffs, and synth grooves fit for a club… throw in a healthy dose of heavy metal and punk influenced guitar, and you have one of the most interesting new albums out there.” (Monkeygoose Magazine). ITDJENTS claims “For fans of King Crimson, Tool, Nine Inch Nails and Battles this is definitely the album for you”. The band’s expansive catalogue of singles and videos, including arrangements of everyone from Kanye West to Skrillex to Fela Kuti, is keeping all eyes and ears on lespecial as they prove in clubs and festivals nationwide why Relix Magazine claims “Amidst the rest of the noise, lespecial is the squeaky wheel that demands attention.” 

Check out lespecial's recent set from Disc Jam Music Festival here:

Mr. B & The Tribal Hoose

Mr B began freestyling and recording mixtapes as a highschooler in Phoenix, AZ. He first came in to the public eye after viral youtube video "Wendys Drive Thru Rap". Soon after, he hit the road in support of acts like DMX and Bone Thugs-N-Harmony. It did not take long for Mr B to realize he wanted to perform with more than just himself, and that's when the Tribal Hoose came along. With every member hailing from a different state, the group began as friends improvising live jams with Mr B as he freestyled at local house shows. They quickly realized they were on to something unique and captivating. The band has since grown and had the opportunity to perform at festivals with likes of Soulja Boy and Ying Yang Twins to name a few. They will B releasing their debut album in the Spring of 2017, followed by a tour to promote their album and movement.

Watch Mr. B & The Tribal Hoose perform "It Ain't All Good (But It's All Good) here:

The Stolen Faces

Photo by Thomas Diasio

Grateful Dead cover band The Stolen Faces deftly capture the spirit of the Dead, covering a wide variety of songs from the band’s expansive catalog and delivering them with the sort of energy and spontaneity that might have you thinking you’re standing in the Fillmore West in 1971. Led by bassist Christian Grizzard, the group features guitarist Jack Silverman, drummer Matt Martin, and a rotating cast of some of Nashville’s top session and touring musicians.

The members of The Stolen Faces all share a love for the Dead, and for the freeform jamming and good vibes that music entails. The group puts a high premium on nailing the vocal harmonies, and has the instrumental firepower to take the extended jams into some seriously trippy sonic territory. In a short time, touring through Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Arkansas, they’ve begun to establish a reputation as one of the Southeast’s most solid and rockin’ Dead bands!

Watch several clips of The Stolen Faces performing here:

Winston Ramble

Based in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, Winston Ramble is a homegrown, folk-rock band. With members originally hailing from the free state of Winston County, AL, the band aims to interject the raw expression of rock-n-roll into the feel-good vibes of folk and bluegrass music.

Watch Winston Ramble & Friends perform "Miss You" here:

Downright

Watch Downright perform "The Dirt" here:

Supatight

Currently out of Asheville, NC, Supatight delivers a high energy live performance that is funk driven and appeals to a wide variety of audiences. While specializing in hard-hitting funk, their music incorporates elements of reggae, soul, jazz, and comedic country. Supatight blends intricately timed grooves with improvisational components resulting in an authentic, full sound, drawing diverse styles from every member of the band.

Watch Supatight perform "Puddin' Foot" here:

Shabti

Watch Shabti's official video for "Canvas of Clay" here:

Jon Poor Band

Watch Jon Poor Band perform "Alone In Our Skins" here:

Goat Hill String Band

Watch Goat Hill String Band perform "Long Train Runnin" here:

 Jason Grubbs & Friends


CukoRakko Music & Arts Festival Reveals Initial 2017 FallFest Lineup August 08, 2017 15:13

Photo by Craig Baird: Home Team Photography
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Share this post directly from the Live & Listen Facebook page and tag a friend in the comments for a chance to win a pair of CukoRakko tickets. Make sure your settings are set to 'public' so we can see the shared post on our end.

Festival organizers have revealed the initial lineup for CukoRakko Music & Arts Festival, which returns Horse Pens 40 in Steele, AL for the fourth consecutive year on October 6th - 8th and will presented by Land Rover of Birmingham. The bi-annual, grassroots music and arts festival has seen tremendous growth with each year, and this fall looks to be no exception. FallFest will feature arguably the festival's exciting lineup to date with BIG Something, The Heavy Pets, Backup PlanetFreekbass, lespecial and Mr. B & The Tribal Hoose rounding out the first wave of bands. A very limited amount of early bird tickets can be purchased today by clicking here.  VIP ticket packages and advance general admission tickets can also be found at CukoRakko.com.  Stay tuned for future artist announcements, exclusive artist interviews, and everything you need to know about CukoRakko!

Get To Know The Lineup:

BIG Something

A 6 piece powerhouse with a sound that is both unique and timeless, BIG Something fuses elements of rock, pop, funk, and improvisation to take listeners on a journey through a myriad of musical styles. It's no secret why this group has quickly become one of the most exciting new bands to emerge from the Southeast. Soaring guitars, synths, horns and alluring vocal hooks rise to the top of their infectious collection of songs and represent a sound that has caught the ears of such revered Summer circuit stalwarts as Galactic, moe., Robert Randolph, and even The B52s who have all tapped Big Something as direct support.

This past February the group released their 4th full-length studio album, Tumbleweed, which was recorded once again with the help of grammy nominated producer John Custer (Corrosion of Conformity). He has produced all of their albums including Truth Serum, which was named 2014 Album of the Year by The Homegrown Music Network, making Big Something the only band ever to win this award 3 times with 3 different releases (2010, 2013, and 2014).

Watch BIG Something perform "The Flood" with Jake Cinninger of Umphrey's McGee here:

The Heavy Pets

The Heavy Pets are a funky-ass rock and roll band from South Florida. Called "a living, breathing force of nature" by Relix magazine, they are known for their songcraft and powerhouse live performances. The band has been a mainstay on the national touring circuit for over a decade, and will release its fourth full-length studio album in September 2017.

The Pets are a seasoned live act, playing over 1200 shows across the country since their inception in 2005. The band's energetic, extended sets have been described as "full blown musical salvation" that embodies the sound of their Florida home, weaving together elements of indie rock, funk and reggae into a style that is uniquely their own.

The group became an instant Sirius radio sensation upon the release of their debut album Whale in 2007. The crossover sound on their self-titled release, named a "Top 10 Album of 2010" by The Huffington Post, propelled them into the periphery of mainstream music. 2011 saw the release of Swim Out Past The Sun, an acoustic affair featuring longtime Jerry Garcia collaborator David Grisman. Beginning in 2013, The Heavy Pets put out a series of EPs recorded at the legendary Power Station studios, and will release its fourth full-length album in September 2017.

Watch The Heavy Pets perform "Dewpoint" > "Jackie Bones" here:

Backup Planet

Rock ‘n’ roll epitomizes escapism in its purest form. It’s not just artistic anesthetization either, but rather a galvanizing force that inspires us to keep pushing through life’s trials and tribulations. That’s why we still listen to Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Pink Floyd, Rush, and countless others all these years later. It’s the same reason audiences will be talking about Backup Planet’s second full-length album, Reactions, for a long time to come. The Nashville, TN quartet—Ben Cooper [keys, vocals], Chris Potocik [drums, vocals], Gavin Donati [guitar, vocals], and Blake Gallant [bass, vocals]—write arena-size anthems echoing with progressive intricacy, funk swagger, and even a little metallic edge. Giving listeners an inspiring and invigorating aural haven, their moniker couldn’t be more apropos…

Watch Backup Planet perform David Bowie's "Fame" here:

Freekbass

Born and raised in Cincinnati, OH, Freekbass was an only child who initially wanted to be a magician. He later developed his own obsession for cartoon superheroes and comic books, relating to the underlying themes.

Living in Cincinnati exposed Freekbass to genres of music he may have missed otherwise. While most kids were listening to Nirvana and Green Day, he connected with the bottom-heavy sounds coming out of the boom boxes like Zapp and Midnight Star. While working in a music shop to pay off his first electric bass he had in lay-away, he began to study the classics of Larry Graham, Sly Stone, Stevie Wonder, Parliament and Bootsy with a bass in one hand, and an MPC2000 in the other.

Freekbass has released six full-length CDs, including “Concentrate” with guests Bootsy Collins, DJ Spooky, Adam Deitch, and Steve Molitz, and “Junkyard Waltz” which includes guest appearances by Phish bassist Mike Gordon, guitarist Buckethead, keyboard wizard from P-Funk/Talking Heads Bernie Worrell, and is produced by funk legend Bootsy Collins. Also, national music DVD instruction company, The Rock House Method, recently released two Freekbass instructional DVDs “Learn Funk Bass with Freekbass (Level 1 & Level 2) “, and TrueFire.com just released the instructional DVD/download “50 Freekbass Licks You Must Know” . In 2010 Freekbass connected with DJ Logic, and Particle keyboardist Steve Molitz to form the funktronica trio, Headtronics. 

Going into 2015 Freek has a lot of things on the table. He just released his next album , “Everybody’s Feelin’ Real”, which is produced by Duane Lundy (My Morning Jacket’s Jim James/Ben Sollee) and includes P-Funk/Rubberband keyboardist Razor Sharp Johnson, horn man Skerik, and Trey Anastasio Band vocalist/trumpet Jennifer Hartswick . Also, he was a part of this year’s London Bass Guitar Show in the UK giving a master class and performing. Plus he will be doing extensive touring with his mainstay funk group, “Freekbass & The Bump Assembly” which also includes funk legend Razor Sharp Johnson on keys/synths and George Clinton & P-Funk alumni Rico Lewis on drums. And recently, he signed with the esteemed label Ropeadope Records.

Watch Freekbass' music video for "Mama's Like A Cowboy" here:

lespecial

Hailed as a breakthrough act to watch in 2017, lespecial, based in Boston and upstate New York, have established themselves as innovators and tastemakers on their own unique trajectory. “Disguised as an average power trio from Boston, lespecial creeps around corners and reaches into the darkest depths of the absurd. lespecial is meticulous, creative and defiant; eclectic, multi-talented and driven. The band prides itself in extending the boundaries of musical ability, rebelliously laying waste to the limits of popular music.” (Ragin Randy Entertainment)

Labeled with such unique descriptions as “dark future groove” or “death funk” to “trance metal” or “haunted house party music”, it is tough to put one’s finger on this dangerous and determined trifecta’s distinct sound. A lespecial set brings their signature blend of psychedelic metal infused funk along with deep, thumping synths and 808s that will have your hips swaying as quick as your head banging. From the band’s origins as three friends in high school in the woods of Connecticut who shared a passion for building unique instruments and hitting them with drum sticks, through studying music at a collegiate level to now running their own music school and studio, The Music Cellar, in Millerton NY, Jonny Grusauskas (guitar/synth/sampler/percussion/vocals), Luke Bemand (bass/synth/percussion) and Rory Dolan’s (drums/samples) unique chemistry is what gives them their incomparable personality.

As Steve Morse, Boston Globe writer and Berklee College of Music professor, claims, “They are virtuoso players- and they really listen to each other closely, which is what raises them apart from today’s progressive wannabees”. After several, eclectic EP releases, their debut album, “Omnisquid”, released in 2015, finds the band “jumping through periods of hypnotic rhythms, catchy riffs, and synth grooves fit for a club… throw in a healthy dose of heavy metal and punk influenced guitar, and you have one of the most interesting new albums out there.” (Monkeygoose Magazine). ITDJENTS claims “For fans of King Crimson, Tool, Nine Inch Nails and Battles this is definitely the album for you”. The band’s expansive catalogue of singles and videos, including arrangements of everyone from Kanye West to Skrillex to Fela Kuti, is keeping all eyes and ears on lespecial as they prove in clubs and festivals nationwide why Relix Magazine claims “Amidst the rest of the noise, lespecial is the squeaky wheel that demands attention.” 

Check out lespecial's recent set from Disc Jam Music Festival here:

Mr. B & The Tribal Hoose

Mr B began freestyling and recording mixtapes as a highschooler in Phoenix, AZ. He first came in to the public eye after viral youtube video "Wendys Drive Thru Rap". Soon after, he hit the road in support of acts like DMX and Bone Thugs-N-Harmony. It did not take long for Mr B to realize he wanted to perform with more than just himself, and that's when the Tribal Hoose came along. With every member hailing from a different state, the group began as friends improvising live jams with Mr B as he freestyled at local house shows. They quickly realized they were on to something unique and captivating. The band has since grown and had the opportunity to perform at festivals with likes of Soulja Boy and Ying Yang Twins to name a few. They will B releasing their debut album in the Spring of 2017, followed by a tour to promote their album and movement.

Watch Mr. B & The Tribal Hoose perform "It Ain't All Good (But It's All Good) here:

 


Blackberry Possum Joins CukoRakko SpringFest Lineup March 23, 2017 13:13

Photo by Jordan Kirkland: Live & Listen

While the lineup for CukoRakko Music & Arts Festival's 2017 SpringFest features a heavy presence of jam, funk, and jazz, festival organizers recognize that the element of music which put Horse Pens 40 on the map is undoubtedly bluegrass. With that being said, organizers are extremely pleased to once again welcome Blackberry Possum as the latest addition to the weekend's roster (May 5th-7th).  In the likeness of Leftover Salmon, Blackberry Possum has the ability to bring to the stage a jamgrass and newgrass appeal, but like traditional bluegrass arrangements can turn on a dime with a standard bluegrass song.  This aspect alone has made BBP a CukoRakko favorite over the years and sparked numerous requests for the band's return in 2017.  The Alabama roots run deep with this group, which features a lineup of seasoned musicians who have been honing their craft for well over 40 years.  

Blackberry Possum is Tony Brook, Wildman Steve, Brian Fowler, Jimbo Leach, John Boyd and Tom Burgess playing bluegrass, newgrass, country and originals.  They will perform at CukoRakko Music & Arts Festival's SpringFest on Saturday, May 6th.

Click Here: Purchase Your CukoRakko SpringFest Tickets Today!

Watch Blackberry Possum perform "Jelly Jam" at CukoRakko on May 14th, 2016 here:


CukoRakko Music & Arts Festival Reveals 2017 SpringFest Lineup February 01, 2017 02:41

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Photo by Paul Hosier: Jack Straw Photography
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Festival organizers have revealed the initial lineup for CukoRakko Music & Arts Festival, which returns Horse Pens 40 in Steele, AL for the fourth consecutive year on May 5th - 7th. The bi-annual, grassroots music and arts festival has seen tremendous growth with each year, and 2017 looks to be no exception.  SpringFest will feature CukoRakko veterans Col. Bruce Hampton & The Madrid Express, as well as Zach Deputy, The Funky Knuckles, Broccoli Samurai, Soul Mechanic, Little Raine BandPermagrooveImperial BlendVoodoo VisionaryDirk Quinn BandRoxy RocaSupatight, and Rescue Dogs.  
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The festivities will kick off on Thursday, May 4th with a pre-party featuring Rescue Dogs, Imperial Blend, and Voodoo Visionary (Presented by JSP Rocks).  The festival officially begins on Friday, March 5th with performances from Zach Deputy, Voodoo Visionary, Imperial Blend, and Supatight. Saturday's performers include Broccoli Samurai, Little Raine Band, Permagroove, Soul Mechanic, Funky Knuckles, and Roxy Roca.  The festival will conclude on Sunday, May 7th with a second set from Funky Knuckles, as well as Dirk Quinn Band and the legendary Col. Bruce Hampton & The Madrid Express.  A very limited amount of early bird tickets can be purchased today by clicking here.  VIP ticket packages and advance general admission tickets can also be found at CukoRakko.com.  Stay tuned for future updates, exclusive artist interviews, and everything you need to know about CukoRakko!
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Purchase tickets to CukoRakko SpringFest!

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Watch the official CukoRakko 2016 SpringFest recap video here:
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Get To Know This Year's Lineup

Col. Bruce Hampton & The Madrid Express

Col. Bruce Hampton has been making music since he formed his first band in 1963. Col. Bruce has been in constant motion ever since leaving a trail of memorable live performances with his many bands, including The Late Bronze Age and Col. Bruce Hampton and The Aquarium Rescue Unit.  Along the way he appeared in the movie "Sling Blade" as the poet and band manager Morris and starred in Mike Gordon's cult classic "Outside Out" as a mystical guitar 'out'structor. Since 2006, The Colonel has been playing a unique blend of blues and jazz with his band Col. Bruce & The Quark Alliance. Still rolling down the road, Col. Bruce continues his quest for the tonal center at each exit #6.

Hampton helped start the 1990s seminal H.O.R.D.E. tours. The best known of his bands to play H.O.R.D.E. is the jazz-rock outfit Aquarium Rescue Unit, which featured improvisational music all-stars Oteil Burbridge, Jimmy Herring, Rev. Jeff Mosier, Matt Mundy and Jeff Sipe.

Watch an entire set from Col Bruce & The Madrid Express here:

Zach Deputy

Zach Deputy is a multi-instrumentalist and songwriter based in Savannah, GA and best known for his live looping shows. Deputy has made his mark thus far as a touring powerhouse. As a boy, the music of his 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. For Zach, most days begin in a hotel room and end a couple of hours after walking off stage.
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Watch Zach Deputy perform "Put It In The Boogie" here:
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The Funky Knuckles

The inevitable result of a talent-soaked soul and jazz community, The Funky Knuckles are taking the sound of Dallas to an entirely different level. They have been together six years and have held a weekly residency since the beginning. The band is comprised of sidemen from some of the most respected acts in the music industry (Beyonce, Erykah Badu, Chrisette Michelle, Talib Kweli, P. Diddy, The Polyphonic Spree, etc.), yet possesses a sound distinctly separate from any of their individual projects.

The Funky Knuckles move together musically as a school of fish, never complacent and always stretching the boundaries of improvisation and composition. Whether performing original music or standards, they draw from each member’s musical experiences to create their unique genre-bending sound. After the release of their debut album on GroundUP Music, As of Lately, The Knuckles added a full-time horn section and began touring nationally.

Meta-Musica (also on GroundUP), climbed the iTunes Jazz Charts to become the #1 selling record in the United States the day it was released.

Watch The Funky Knuckles' official music video for "Arise" here:

Broccoli Samurai

Since forming in the Rustbelt of Cleveland, OH in 2010, Broccoli Samurai has been taking the club and festival scene by storm. The band's synth-laden, drum and bass influenced, progressive electronica has been thrilling audiences throughout the Midwest, Mid-Atlantic, and Northeast markets, winning them a massive and fiercely loyal fanbase. Eager fans pack dance floors and late-night festival sets with smiles across their faces, waiting to get lost in the band’s ambient soundscapes, anticipating every bass drop that will force them to move with reckless abandon. Broccoli Samurai’s line-up includes founding member Ryan “Bruce” Hodson on keys and synth, Cameron Bickley on drums and percussion, accomplished bassist Zach Wolfe anchors the rhythm section, while guitarist Michael Vincent weaves in and out, exploring new sonic territory.
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The band has played countless festivals such as Peach Music Festival, Electric Forest, Catskill Chill Music Festival, Aura Music and Art Festival, The Werk Out, BIG What?!, Domefest, Paradise Music and Art Festival, Rootwire, The Mad Tea Party Jam, The Ville, SummerDance, Disc Jam, Night Lights Fall Music Festival, The Gathering At Chaffee’s, Utica Music and Art Festival, and Hyperion Fest. Broccoli Samurai has directly supported and toured with many known bands including Dopapod, Papadosio, Lotus, Conspirator, The Werks, Ozric Tentacles, BoomBOX, Big Gigantic, Rusted Root, O.A.R., Pigeons Playing Ping Pong, Aqueous, and BIG Something. Broccoli Samurai’s extensive tour schedule has them playing high profile venues and major cities regularly, and the band will be increasing the number of performances and expanding their reach into the West Coast and Southern markets. This band is making big moves and the time to take notice is now.

Watch an entire set from Broccoli Samurai at Asheville Music Hall here:

  Soul Mechanic

Soul Mechanic is a progressive funk group hailing from Chattanooga, Tennessee. Soul Mechanic have been honing their unique sound through a relentless tour regime. Soul Mechanic is William English-Guitar, Jessica Nunn-Viola, Marcus White-Keyboard, Parrish Gabriel-Bass, and Devonte Hutchins-Drums.  Soul Mechanic brings a progressive rock sound with influences from all across the board. Keeping you groovin' for an entire set with an innovative soul sound, heavy on the bass and light on the heart. Soul Mechanic's main focus is having a good time with our crowd, and dancin' the night away with them.

Watch Soul Mechanic perform "Senseless" at Rhythm & Brews in Chattanooga here:

Little Raine Band

Little Raine Band is a band truly on the rise, and is quickly becoming known as the hottest act in the Southeast. With an ever-evolving sound and fan base reaching all over the Southeast these young musicians have pledged their lives to master the art of live performance and creating a one of a kind live show. Little Raine Band is a four-piece band from Birmingham, AL that craft their sound from their unique musical backgrounds and an intense passion to follow their dream. Elements of progressive rock, funk, jazz fusion, electronic music, R&B, and energetic improvisations can be heard in a Little Raine Band show along with covers to cater to any crowd.

Watch Little Raine Band perform "New Beginnings" at Exit/In in Nashville here:

Permagroove

Permagroove is a Rock-n-Roll band originally from Fort Payne, AL currently touring regionally in support of their new album, “Perfectly Broken Machine.” With a lot of momentum behind them, the band is seeing a surge of new fans coming to their shows to hear the eclectic sounds blended from many genres. Permagroove’s tight grooves, spacious jams are delivered by top notch musicianship and classic southern taste. This, combined with crafty songwriting and memorable lyrics makes Permagroove a relevant up-and-coming act on the music scene.

Watch Permagroove perform Bob Marley's "Could You Be Loved" at Zydeco in Birmingham here:

 Imperial Blend

Imperial Blend is a four piece Electronic/Rock group based out of Greensboro, NC. Their live shows are filled with captivating ambiance and sonic textures. Having soft guitar mixing with tantalizing keys, and tempered percussion propelling heavy dropping bass lines, Imperial Blend will keep you moving during the entire show. Since they began playing shows in March 2011 they have gained a steady following and a lot of love. They have shared the stage with such bands as Zoogma, Dopapod, The Mantras, The Heavy Pets, Jimkata, BIG Something as well as having the privilege to play sets at Camp Barefoot, Gnarnia, Mantrabash, and many others

Watch Imperial Blend perform "Starship" at The Blind Tiger here:

 Voodoo Visionary

Voodoo Visionary hails from the dirty south musical mecca of Atlanta. Their improvisational funk dance music delicately balances a tight, grooving rhythm section with diverse and dexterous keys and masterful guitar licks to create a sound the group calls psychofunk. Influenced by a wide array of artists such as Parliament Funkadelic, the Meters, the Grateful Dead, and Talking Heads, Voodoo Visionary has a uniquely blended sound that’s guaranteed to put the 'oogie in yo boogie.

The band is made up of Dennis Dowd (keys), Jimmy Lynch (bass), Scott MacDonald (vocals), Mac Schmitz (drums), and Mike Wilson (guitar). Wilson, Schmitz and Lynch have been playing together for over 8 years, during which time they built a unique chemistry that allows for exceptional improvisation during live shows. MacDonald joined the group in July 2013 as the lead vocalist and Voodoo Visionary began writing new music and playing shows immediately. Dowd was added to the band in March 2014 providing a missing link that enhanced the band’s distinctive sound, and the group has since taken off in the Atlanta music scene. Jose Rivera (percussion), Martin Anderson (saxophone), and Ben Otieno (trumpet) are regular additions to the live show and are featured on Voodoo Visionary's sophomore album.

Voodoo Visionary released their debut album, Spirit of the Groove in March 2015. Over the past two years, while playing across the southeast, the band has shared the stage with acts such as Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe with Jimmy Herring, TAUK, Col. Bruce Hampton, Zach Deputy, Earphunk, Roosevelt Collier, Jerry Joseph, The Main Squeeze, and Futurebirds. The band has been performing at venues like Variety Payhouse, Terminal West, the Georgia Theatre, Barrelhouse South, Ringside Cafe, and Crowbar, as well as major festivals such as Counterpoint Music and Arts Festival and Sweetwater 420 Fest. The band has made live radio appearances on WUGA's It's Friday program, WMNF's In the Groove, and WPRK's Green Eggs and Jams. In 2016, they have excelled further into the regional and national music scene with festival performances at Sweetwater 420 Fest, Purple Hatters Ball, Great Outdoors Jam, Imagine Festival, Hookahville, and Backwoods Music Festival. They are scheduled to release their second studio album, “Off The Ground,” in February 2017.

Watch Voodoo Visionary perform "Hold TIght" at Variety Playhouse in Atlanta here:

Dirk Quinn Band

Dirk Quinn is the guitarist for a high energy funk/jazz band based out of Philadelphia that travels extensively throughout the US and Canada. Utilizing over a decade of steady performing, Quinn has developed a unique and progressive style - one that appeals to a wide variety of music listeners with fans ranging from the jam band hippies to the jazz snobs.

Surrounding himself with a group of extremely talented and like-minded musicians, Quinn has been playing shows across North America while receiving an ever increasing amount of media attention. His music has now been featured on over 100+ radio stations worldwide and gets regular airplay in his hometown of Philadelphia. Notable spins include the "Pick of the Day" on WXPN in Philadelphia as well as on the nationally syndicated "Keller's Cellar" broadcast hosted by Keller Williams.

The band’s infectious energy and musical interplay routinely attract listeners that are admittedly more accustomed to lyric-based music. With great melodic sensibilities, rhythmic experimentation and an accessible modern edge, the Dirk Quinn Band is jazz/funk improvisation at its most exciting!

Watch Dirk Quinn Band perform "Easy Comes Easy" at Pub Down Under here: 

Roxy Roca

No one leaves a Roxy Roca show dissatisfied. A sonic shot to the arm of Texas infused, powerhouse-southern soul and funk complete with a certain tightness only achievable after playing an average of more than 220 shows a year. Roxy Roca shows are like stepping into a tent-revival somewhere in the Deep South, and crooner Taye Cannon is here to speak the gospel. Each tune flows over with hooky guitar riffs, funky backbeats, slammin’ horn lines, and lyrics of love, heartache, and a message of choosing happiness above all else sung with a conviction and sincerity as only Roxy Roca’s green-eyed Soul-Cannon can deliver.

Hailing from Austin, Texas, the band has come a long way in the short time it has existed. 2015 brought with it the release of Roxy Roca’s latest album, Ain’t Nothin’ Fancy, on Stag Records. Recorded at EAR Studio in Austin with producer Lars Goransson at the helm, the record captures the classic sounds reminiscent of Stax, Motown, and Domino Records. One might say the band wears its influences on its sleeve, and any member of the six-piece soul outfit would happily list off the forefathers of soul and funk.

Now two albums deep, and hundreds of shows later, Roxy Roca has had the good fortune to share the stage with some incredible acts ranging from outright classics such as B.B. King, Tom Jones, and Lee Fields to more modern acts like Fitz and The Tantrums, Mayer Hawthorne, Trombone Shorty, and Vintage Trouble. The future looks bright for Roxy Roca, and there is no end in sight.

Watch Roxy Roca's official music video for "Love Maker DeVille" here:

Supatight

Currently out of Asheville, NC, Supatight delivers a high energy live performance that is funk driven and appeals to a wide variety of audiences. While specializing in hard-hitting funk, their music incorporates elements of reggae, soul, jazz, and comedic country. Supatight blends intricately timed grooves with improvisational components resulting in an authentic, full sound, drawing diverse styles from every member of the band.

Supatight formed in Durham, NC in 2008 with the original lineup consisting of Tyler Mack (Vocals/Bass/Trumpet), Mikey Domanico (Rhythm Guitar), Max Palmer (Drums), Nigel Kher (Saxophone), and Torrey Beek (Lead Guitar). The original members were spread out at different Universities across NC, allowing the band to build a following from the mountains to the coast. The band relocated to Boone, NC in 2011 where they added Matt Powers (Keys), Will Miller (Drums), and Charlie Evans (Lead Guitar). While sticking to the fundamental funk orientation the band was founded on, Supatight continues to evolve, producing fresh new grooves that have audiences dancing up and down the east coast.

Watch SupaTight's official music video for "Kick Rox" here:

Rescue Dogs

Rescue Dogs was formed in September of 2009 by Birmingham musicians Andy Gathings, Daniel Belk, Bobby Bruner, Derek Nolin, Clifford Smith and Daniel Long. Combining raw and earthen tones from Classic Rock and Roll, the smooth and funky sounds of Southern Soul, a generous dose of down-home Americana, and compelling traditional Rhythms from around the globe, Rescue Dogs forge an energetic and eclectic sonance accompanied by an express invitation to move!

Watch Rescue Dogs perform "Driving Song" at Stillwater Pub here:

 

Click Here: Purchase Your CukoRakko Tickets Today!


Maradeen & Bird Dog Jubilee To Play CukoRakko Pre-Party On October 6th September 20, 2016 11:53

Just in case you weren't already excited enough about the upcoming CukoRakko Music & Arts Festival, further details on the Thursday night pre-party (Oct. 6th) have officially been announced.  Nashville-based jam/rock quintet Maradeen will headline the pre-party, with direct support from Atlanta's Bird Dog Jubilee.  Both bands had been previously announced on the festival lineup, which means festival goers will have the opportunity to get a double dose of both of these hot young acts.  Make sure to head to the official Facebook event page for the pre-party for all of the latest updates on Thursday night's festivities.  

CukoRakko's Fall Fest will be held at Horse Pens 40 in Steele, AL from Thursday, October 6th - Sunday, October 9th.  The lineup this fall will feature as diverse and exciting of a lineup as we have seen from the festival, including the likes of The Heavy Pets, Funk You, Col. Bruce Hampton & Madrid Express feat. Carter Herring, Backup PlanetWinston RambleDank & Friends, The Captain Midnight Band (x2), Maradeen, Mama's Love, Dank & Friends, The Stolen Faces, Jason Bailey Band, Boy Named BanjoRoyal & Toulouse, Bird Dog JubileeSeeds?and Harkestra's Grateful Gospel Jamboree.

Click Here: Purchase your CukoRakko tickets today!

Maradeen

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Maradeen is an American rock band based out of Nashville, Tennessee. Founded by guitarist, Whit Murray, in the summer of 2014 with keyboardist, Kaitlyn Connor, and bassist, Sterling Miller, the band formed their initial roots as a high energy rock n roll quartet. With classical and jazz improvisation backgrounds they forged and evolved a unique and well-versed sound. In 2015 Tom Galloway moved to Nashville for songwriting and began collaborations with Murray. The band entered the analog studio "Welcome to 1979" in the spring of 2015 and recorded their first full-length LP entitled, "Mirage". The album features the initial hard-hitting rockers from the band's formative stage while revealing the new songwriting dynamic between Murray and Galloway.

Although the band was new to the scene at this time, the origins of Maradeen run deep. Murray played lead guitar for Galloway's band, Mama's Love, between the years of 2009-12. During this time they toured nationwide, developed a devoted fanbase, and recorded with renowned producers Tom Tapley and John Keane. Galloway continued fronting Mama's Love while Murray extended his education at The Berklee College of Music.

Mama's Love had shared the stage with the progressive rock band, Afro, several times in the past which featured Connor on keys. Connor met Miller through the MTSU music program where Miller majored in audio engineering and played with bands Harrison Anvil and The Bourbon Barrel Band. A long line of history, coincidence, and mutual passion brought together the group, and they continue to make strides as they climb the mountain of music.

Listen to Maradeen's new single "Livin' For The Weekend" here:

Official Music Video - "She Treat Me Like a Real Man"

Bird Dog Jubilee

Bird Dog Jubilee is a 4 piece jam band from Atlanta, GA whose sound blends classic and psychedelic rock with a touch of the blues. Formed in early 2014 playing private parties and outdoor festivals, they quickly developed their own style through different influences. Bird Dog Jubilee’s use of musical improvisation and blend of musical genres sets them apart from what you see on stage today. Inspired by The Rolling Stones, Grateful Dead, The Band, and Phish, Bird Dog Jubilee has crafted their own unique sound with catchy lyrics, intricate guitar riffs, and crunchy jams. Always playing a different set and using different theatrics, they will keep you begging for more.

Watch BDJ jam on Phish's "Bathtub Gin" here:

Click Here: Purchase your CukoRakko tickets today!

Click Here: Learn More About The Blueberry Jam (10/14-10/15)


CukoRakko Music & Arts Festival Reveals Final Lineup For Fall Fest August 15, 2016 11:53

Photo by Jordan Kirkland: Live & Listen

Share this post directly from our Facebook page and tag a friend for a chance to win two weekend passes to CukoRakko.  We will announce a winner via Facebook on Monday, August 22nd at 12:00 PM CST.

CukoRakko Music & Arts Festival is pleased to reveal it's phase three artist announcement and final artist lineup for the 2016 Fall Fest at Horse Pens 40 on October 6th - 9th.  The phase three artist announcement includes a very special reunion performance from Mama's Love (Athens, GA), Dank & Friends (Atlanta, GA), Winston Ramble (Birmingham, AL), Bird Dog Jubilee (Atlanta, GA), and Seeds? (Huntsville, AL).  A variety of single-day and weekend passes to the festival can be purchased by clicking here.  CukoRakko is a one-of-a-kind, family-friendly event located at one of the South's best kept secrets, Horse Pens 40.  Kids ages 10 and under are admitted for free.  Stay tuned for details on Live & Listen's official pre-party at Horse Pens 40 on Thursday, October 6th.  

CukoRakko's Fall Fest will be held at Horse Pens 40 in Steele, AL from Thursday, October 6th - Sunday, October 9th.  The lineup this fall will feature as diverse and exciting of a lineup as we have seen from the festival, including the likes of The Heavy Pets, Funk You, Col. Bruce Hampton & Madrid Express feat. Carter Herring, Backup PlanetWinston RambleDank & Friends, The Captain Midnight Band (x2), Maradeen, Mama's Love, The Stolen Faces, Jason Bailey Band, Boy Named Banjo, Royal & Toulouse, Bird Dog Jubilee, Seeds?and Harkestra's Grateful Gospel Jamboree.

Click Here: Purchase your CukoRakko tickets today!

In preparation for the October festivities, we have included video or audio footage from each of this year's performers below.  This lineup features a variety of amazing talent from across the Southeast, including many of the regions top up-and-coming acts.  Stay tuned for future coverage and exclusive content, including our annual interview series, "The Road To CukoRakko," which will be released in early October.

The Heavy Pets

"Dewpoint" - Live at The Georgia Theatre

"Keep Me Running" - Live at The Georgia Theatre

 Funk You

"Lets Dance" - Live at Terminal West

Col. Bruce Hampton & Madrid Express w/ Carter Herring

Entire set from Echo Mountain Studios

Backup Planet

Official music video for "The Road"

Winston Ramble

"Free State of Mind" - Live at Muscle Shoals Studio

Dank

Official music video for "Get Up"

The Captain Midnight Band

"Common Law Hussy"

Maradeen

Official Music Video - "She Treat Me Like a Real Man"

Mama's Love

Listen to "Catch a Feelin'" here:

Listen to "Wake Up Woes" here:

 The Stolen Faces (Grateful Dead Tribute)

Official Music Video - "U.S. Blues"

Boy Named Banjo

Listen to "Blue Hole Bridge" here:

Jason Bailey Band

"Adventures of Shannon Ceili"

Royal & Toulouse

Official music video - "One Direction"

Bird Dog Jubilee

Covering Twiddle's "Lost In The Cold"

Seeds?

Live at Lowe Mill in Huntsville, AL

Harkestra's Grateful Gospel Jamboree

Live from CukoRakko SpringFest 2015


The Road to CukoRakko: Ryan Keef and Jason Guinn of Permagroove May 05, 2016 10:44

Our latest segment, "The Road to CukoRakko," consists of a series of interviews leading up to CukoRakko Music & Arts Festival next weekend at Horse Pens 40 in Steele, AL.  We recently caught up with Ryan Keef (guitar/vocals) and Jason Guinn (bass/vocals) of Permagroove, one of North Alabama's most promising up-and-coming bands.   

Recently described by Tim Reynolds (Dave Matthews Band/TR3) as, "...the Allman Brothers x10 on acid," Permagroove is one of the South's most electrifying up-and-coming live bands. Their sound is an eclectic genre-blend, built on tight grooves, top-notch songwriting, and spacious jams with plenty of molten-hot guitar solos and instantly memorable lyrics. Originally from Fort Payne, AL, the band is currently touring in support of their new EP, "Perfectly Broken Machine."

Permagroove is set to play CukoRakko at 6:30 PM on Saturday, May 14th.

Interview by Jordan Kirkland: Live & Listen

Permagroove is one of many up-and-coming bands to surface out of North Alabama  in recent years. When did you guys officially get  this thing rolling? Tell me about the band's early days.  

Ryan:  I believe we just had our one year anniversary. Jason called me last spring and told me that he'd just gotten Isaac, and asked me to come join. We had all played together in some form or another over the years, so there was already a good chemistry and foundation to build from. I think we had one rehearsal, and it just came together. And we're even friends too, believe it or not. That helps a tremendous amount, actually.  

Jason:  It officially started rolling the first time Chase (drums) and I played with Ryan and Isaac together. The core between Chase and I was solid, and we had the most dynamic guitar player we could ask for with Isaac, but the one-two combination with the twin guitars took it over the top for us. Chase and I still look at each other when we're playing like, "Damn, these guys are something else." Also, Ryan’s songwriting is phenomenal. I believe everyone in the band was a fan of Ryan well before we started playing together. 

Alabama's music scene seems to be constantly evolving.  With new venues surfacing nearly every year, the opportunity to perform and build your following only increases.  How has Permagroove's schedule shaped up thus far in 2016?   

Ryan:  This year is treating us pretty well so far. We've got a few festivals on the books, and we're breaking ground into new markets and more premier, noteworthy venues. It can be difficult with all of the new venues opening and closing, but we've made some great strides in that last six months. Doors are opening, and I'm excited to see where the journey takes us.  

Jason:  Our schedule has shaped up very nicely. We've not only have been invited back to CukoRakko, but also added Jam in the Ham in Birmingham and Riverbend Music Festival in Chattanooga. Hammering the markets in Huntsville, Mobile, Tuscaloosa, Birmingham, Chattanooga, and Auburn has started paying off. Our crowds keep growing everywhere we go and it's really exciting for us. We just recently added a run through Georgia in the fall, and we're also heading down to Florida in the Summer. We're always looking for new places to play where people love to hear live music. 

Click Here: Purchase tickets to CukoRakko Music & Arts Festival 

Permagroove recently released its latest studio work with the Perfectly Broken Machine EP.  Tell me a little bit about how this group of songs came together.  How was the recording process different than your previous work? 

Ryan:  With the exception of the Marley cover we put in there, these were all songs I had previously recorded under my own name. We reinvented and rearranged them in a very fitting way, which set them apart quite a bit. We tried to do most of it live in the studio, to capture the energy. But, there's also some overdubs in there. Overall, it's a pretty accurate representation of who we are as a band, and that's something you don't always get out of a studio recording.  

Jason: We are a live band. I know a lot of people say that, but we truly are. We recorded this album with no click tracks, we just laid it down. Ryan has an awesome collection of songs, and he allows us to put our spin on things. I think it comes across pretty well. We weren't originally going to record Could You Be Loved, but Dave Brandwein (from Turkuaz) gave us some encouragement, and I'm glad we did. I am really excited about not only about this recording, but the future ones we've yet to record. 

 Watch Permagroove perform "Fish Agree" at Zydeco in Birmingham here:

Every band has their own unique way of putting together a set list.  What does the process entail for you guys as you prepare for each show?  

Ryan:  That depends mostly on the venue; different set times and all that jazz. Once in a while, one of us will write out the setlist early in the day and we'll all discuss any segues or different arrangements together. Usually we'll just rattle off three or four songs to start with and see where it takes us. We try to avoid dead air.  

Jason: "What do you wanna play?" is usually the question asked about five minutes before we play, and then everyone gives a roundabout. Then, two seconds before start it's "What are the first three songs?" and the rest usually just comes together somehow. 

Click Here: Purchase Tickets to CukoRakko Music & Arts Festival 

We're coming up on CukoRakko, one of Alabama's young, growing music festivals.  Horse Pens 40 is without a doubt one of the most amazing locations in the state.  What does it mean to you guys to be back once again this Spring?

Ryan:  I have to say, Horse Pens 40 is gorgeous. We're really looking forward to being back. Jamie and Greg, and all the folks involved are all class-acts, and that makes things easy. We kicked off the fall festival last year, but we had to get to another gig that evening. Hopefully we'll be able to spend more time there this year. It doesn't hurt that it's close to home either.  

Jason: It means a lot to me. The community that CukoRakko has created is very family oriented and everybody involved are just top notch people. I know Jamie and Greg do not invite back a lot of repeat performers, so I feel very honored for us to get asked back for a second time. The Shultz family do a wonderful job preserving Horse Pens 40, and the scenery is second to none. CukoRakko has gained such a reputation that you don’t even have to look at the lineup to know that the music is going to be awesome every year. I am fired up, and I know the guys are excited to not only play, but be a part of the fellowship that takes place. 

Horse Pens 40 in Steele, AL :: Home of CukoRakko Music & Arts Festival

CukoRakko will give you guys an opportunity to play in front of many fans who know your music well, as well as many who will be seeing you for the first time.  How would you best describe what the crowd at Horse Pens can expect from Permagroove? 

Ryan:  Endless self indulgence. But no, really. What I love about playing with these guys is that it's always fresh. We can play the same song back to back and it's going to be different. We feed off of each other and the crowd, we listen, and we let the music take us where we're going.  

Jason: We're going to give you everything we’ve got for whatever length we are given. There are going to be parts of our playing that are completely spontaneous and off the cuff. You might hear some something one minute that is rooted in country with a blues twist, and the next some rocked out “mountain funk," but whatever it is it'll be us. 

Official Website: Permagroove

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