I first caught Nathan-Paul & The Admirables opening for Moon Hooch at Terminal West in Atlanta in June, 2019. It was one of those wonderful musical moments when catching the opening act leads to discovering some terrific vibes, which I decided to capture in a short video (end of post) which features Do It and Day 6 from this album.
Flash forward a couple of years and Nathan-Paul and I have kept in touch so I was excited to get an early listen to their fine new album Funk Me, released on July 9th.
This is the band’s first album with seven solid experimental jazz funk dance hip-hop tunes. Check out the track-by-track coverage.
An Invitation seems to start in reverse with a brief warped intro and a pause before jumping in some sweet horn lines as the main theme with Nathan-Paul adding some rippling notes on top. The melody continues up to a short stop finish.
Funk Me has the horns start in full force with a repeat intro before breaking into full funk mode with some excellent alternating between the full horns, Nathan-Paul on alto and Tommy Lehman on trumpet. The rhythm has a deep darker edge and the tune has a bouncy groove right to the end.
For The Night starts off with Billie Mitchell guesting on vocals. It’s an uptempo vibe with Nathan-Paul soloing briefly early and then entering midway with some rollicking sonic riffs in the altissimo range. Billie comes back enticing the listener to go along for a ride. Tommy takes a turn on trumpet and like Nathan-Paul before him, the mix bounces back and forth between left and right channels for a nice effect.
Do It has the crew chanting the title and then the horns and rhythm mirror that chant. Nathan-Paul takes the lead before the full groove comes back. The band again chants the chorus and Zaire Darden drives the group forward on the return to the main theme. You can listen to this one with the horns foreground and rhythm background or reverse quite easily. The alto takes us roundabout to the outro.
Day 6 has the horns sounding a clarion call at the beginning, seemingly more than just a two-piece. Tommy and Nathan-Paul wreak havoc with the asynchronous playing and the darker rhythm section supports the creative chaos. The quick pull up ending is a nice effect.
I‘m Just Playin starts with a circular Nathan-Paul solo and a quick shout. There’s some fuzzed guitar and and a heavy sounding drum giving way to a searing solo from Tommy Lehman on trumpet. Nathan-Paul comes back with the lead before the entire band yields to his soothing close-out solo.
We Are The People has an anthemic chant “We are the people and we come here to get our groove on,” at the start. The band enters with Nathan-Paul as the lead with some blistering hot altissimo lead alto. Matthew Derubertis’ definitive bass serves as a great backdrop. The group repeats the opening chant and continue with the solid funky main melody. The tune and album close with some tight alto and drum synchronous finishing flourish.
🠰 Listen to the album here
Purchase the album here 🠲
Hailing from the funky rust belt town of Cleveland, Ohio, Nathan-Paul & The Admirables have created a live experience that is all about good vibes! Going to an Admirables show is a party. Bold and funky Earth-tones from the horns at the front line lead the band through the dynamic twists and turns. Hypnotic grooves from the rhythm section get heads bobbing and bodies moving. An Admirables show is a healing and exciting experience. Whether the Admirables are jamming on a trap groove or laying down the funk, their goal is to get you moving. The band calls upon many of the feel-good muses of groove music such as Kool & The Gang, J-Dilla, James Brown, Erykah Badu, Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock plus many more. As the old adage goes, ‘Music is Food for the Soul.’ The Admirables will get you fed!
- Nathan-Paul Davis – Alto Sax
- Tommy Lehman – Trumpet
- Lucas Kadish – Guitar
- Matthew Derubertis – Bass
- Zaire Darden – Drums
- Billie Mitchell- Guest Vocalist *3 ‘For The Night’
- Other vocal tracks include the band collectively
Mix and Mastered by Tyler Cratcha
All Songs and Words written by Nathan-Paul
With the exception of the lyrics to ‘For The Night’ by Tyler Cratcha