Snarky Puppy is a global phenomena – super popular overseas in Japan, Asia, Europe and Latin America – and totally on point in the U.S. with its extremely knowledgeable fan base.  FunkCity.net recently had the pleasure of attending the second GroundUP Music Festival in Miami Beach which is produced by the band and its label.  The fest brings together a eclectic mix of music that you will not hear anywhere else on the planet.  It’s a mix of Snarky Puppy sets, GroundUP label mates and bands that you may or may not have heard of but that you should know and give a listen to, according to Michael League, the band’s leader and festival music director.

League brings in some of the world’s most renown musicians and it is reflected in the audience and fan base that attends which is comprised of a large international contingent as well as a likely majority of musicians.

Each night Snarky Puppy performs one set and then yields the main stage to an “alternative” headliner.  On successive nights this year it was Bela Fleck and the Flecktones Trio, The Wood Brothers and Robert Glasper, although on the third and final night, Snarky Puppy does play last.  The mix of styles, genres, cultures and languages makes for a universal blending and feeling of camaraderie and something special on and off the stages.  The fans are immersed and interact with the musicians through performance, learning workshops throughout the day and finally all out partying in the late night sessions.  (See Schedule).

The first night Snarky Puppy set was a short, burner from start to finish.  The set was mostly drawn from the most recent grammy award-winning album Culcha Vulcha and the ever popular We Like It Here.

Watch and listen to the opening night full set here: Snarky Puppy @ GroundUP Music Festival 2-9-18

Set list:

  1. Grown Folks
  2. Palermo*
  3. Whitecap
  4. Binky
  5. What About Me?
  6. Shofukan (E)

Snarky Puppy Lineup:

  • Michael League, Bass
  • Bob Lanzetti, Guitar
  • Shaun Martin, Keys
  • Justin Stanton, Keys & Trumpet
  • Chris Bullock, sax and flute
  • Mike “Maz” Maher, trumpet
  • Jay Jennings, trumpet
  • Bob Reynolds, sax
  • Marcelo Woloski, percussion
  • Larnell Lewis, drums
  • *Nate Werth, congas