Funky Hulaween Saturday and Sunday: Let the Funk Flow

Saturday might as well be called ‘Soulday’ as this may be the strongest single day soul lineup ever with The Original Nth Power, Cautious Clay, Durand Jones and the Indicators, and Leon Bridges. By the time Saturday rolls around, everyone’s fully in the groove and the vibe is amazing.  On top of that list for soulful souls, there’s some special treats for the funksters and blues crews as well. I’ll jump into my target schedule right here –

The Original Nth Power as the name implies brings the band back together with their original 5 – Nate Edgar (bass), Nikki Glaspie (drums), Nicholas Cassarino (guitar), Nigel Hall (keys) and Weedie Braimah (percussion). The band had recently dropped back to a trio but with Lettuce in town the night before, Nigel Hall will be welcomed back for this special set.  On top of that Weedie is a master of the Djembe and will bring some extra heat to this set. This will be a rapid turnaround for Nikki since she’ll finish her set with Kamani at 1:30 am Saturday! 

Cautious Clay is another new act for me live, but I really dig what I see on YouTube.  This young man from Cleveland has a silky smooth voice , slightly deeper than say Frankie Beverly.  He’s about to lay some soulful butter on Hula.  I’ll plan to catch him again when he hits Terminal West in Atlanta next March.

Durand Jones & The Indicators will hit you with that old school soul.  On the heels of Cautious Clay, Hula will be melted by the warmth of these sets on the Hallows stage.  DJTI brings Durand as the lead singer, a finae sax-trumpet horn section, and Aaron Frazer on drums and vocals.  Aaron is the co-founder, songwriter and songwriter and adds another Marvin Gaye-like voice to the band. Hot damn! 

Honey Island Swamp Band are a New Orleans bayou blues and soul band formed in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.  Always gotta love having mandolin in the mix and is a perfect fit for this afternoon.

Leon Bridges is a fast rising star of the soul scene.  His appearance on the Hallows stage will cap a three act in a row run there. Leon brings that old Stax feel akin to Sam Cooke presence despite being from Fort Worth, TX. Most recently, he was one of the first acts to play the brand new venue, The Eastern in Atlanta for two nights.

Funk You are one of the fastest rising funk bands in the U.S. right now having just played the Resonance Festival, Brookyn Bowl and live from the Relix Studios and touring all over.  Originally from James Brown’s hometown of Augusta, GA, most of the band are hometown ATL friends. The incorporation of a three piece horn section expanding the band to 9 pieces solidified their funk bona fides.  Looking forward to a late night throwdown and perhaps we’ll hear some of the tunes from their forthcoming album “Moving Forward.”

Sometimes Sunday can be a wind down as the festy cruises to the culmination.  Not this year!  Sunday is a wind up to a climatic ending as the organizers really stacked the lineup and will keep everyone pumped up and guaranteed to wanna come back for more next year!

Turkuaz Remain in Light is sure to be one of the highlights of the whole festival! A regular Turkuaz set is a funk extravaganza and something I never miss.  With the addition of Jerry Harrison & Adrian Belew from Talking Heads this cover set is a unique opportunity for something special. The musicianship and showmanship of this band is over the top and will be a fantastic early set for sure.

Jungle, Jungle, Jungle can’t be said enough. Since catching them at Terminal West in ATL and Central Park in NYC, they’ve become the elusive band that I’m always tracking.  When they hit the scene it was something that I’d never seen – a totally captivating show with amazing mystique and danceable tunes. Their debut album was one that I had in constant rotation for about 6 months. They are one group that puts out amazing videos (Time shown on right is an all time favorite) but is also wild live. Another must see band, you never know when you’ll have the chance again.

Khruangbin also has experienced a meteoric rise with their Thai funk aura and unique stage persona.  There look establishes such a chill vibe and will be a great entrement to the late evening activities. Looking forward to seeing them here and back in Atlanta at The Eastern in early December

Dr. Bacon is new to me but I’ve heard good things coming out of Asheville, NC about them. According to their website, they play “Appalachian funk, grass and rock & roll band.” It’s always cool to have a different mix of instruments and these guys check the the ‘must have some cool violin’ chops at a festival’ box for me. 

Roosevelt Collier Band — Roosevelt, “The Dr.” is a master of the pedal steel guitar and always puts on a funk clinic for the fans.  It’s really one time that I am so excited to see the festival right to the end and this set will be massive.  Ask anyone who was at or has seen his set from Hulaween and they’ll tell you – best set of the whole time!

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