Fresh off the airplane and an inspiring trip to the Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville, stic.man, M-1, and DJ mikeflo brought their A game to this small packed club on a Tuesday night. Peep the videos if you RBG.
dead prez – Malcolm Garvey Huey > Hip-Hop 8/16/11 Lexington, KY @ Cosmic Charlies:
dead prez – Hell Yeah (Pimp The System) 8/16/11 Lexington, KY @ Cosmic Charlies:
dead prez – Radio Freq – That’s War! 8/16/11 Lexington, KY @ Cosmic Charlies:
When we left Atlanta on Friday morning, our goal was to arrive at Bear Creek Music Festival, set up camp, and get our asses down to the Dr. Lonnie Smith Trio set at 3pm. After some fast driving and an even faster tent set up, we set out to explore the magical Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park with time to spare.
As we exited the campground area, I encountered the Big IV Ampitheater for the first time. I had seen pictures and heard stories, but now I was able to truly appreciate the wonder of this small piece of earth they call Suwannee. At that point in time, the Spam Allstars were on-stage with Pee Wee Ellis guesting.
As I pulled out my video camera to shoot my first video of the weekend, they began the James Brown classic, Cold Sweat! I started shooting immediately, then decided to try out my new press pass to enter the pit area. You can see at the end of the video as I try to enter and security informs me that my press pass only allows access to the pit during the first 3 songs of each set. Turned away, I stopped filming in order to better absorb this magical place with my own senses, rather than the camera. Accordingly, this particular video is less than 3 minutes long, but it shows some of the vibe on this Friday afternoon.
Bear Creek is like late night at New Orleans Jazz Fest on steroids. You have to walk away from someone like Pee Wee Ellis in order to catch another legend like Dr. Lonnie Smith. I was excited for his trio in large part because of the drummer, Jamire Williams, who has played with Christian Scott, Robert Glasper, Gretchen Parlato, Bilal, and others from the NYC jazz/hip-hop scene. Although, I was equally impressed with guitarist Jonathan Kreisberg, whom I wasn’t familiar with. Anyway, When the good organ doctor and his trio came out the silky smooth B-3 organ sounds wafted through the warm afternoon air and all was good…
Dr. Lonnie Smith Trio – Mellow Mood 11/11/11 Bear Creek:
Dr. Lonnie Smith Trio – Beehive 11/11/11 Bear Creek:
Finally, I’ll include another early afternoon video, this one from Sunday morning. Breakestra took a rare trip out of the LA area to bring their non-stop medley of hip-hop samples to Florida, and I was able to capture a few bars…
Breakestra – Medley (Ring Of Fire > Greedy G > Shifting Gears > Champ > Because I Got It Like That > Funky Soul > Getcho Soul Togetha) 11/12/11 Bear Creek:
B. Getz, in his recent Bear Creek Music Festival review on JamBase, described Lettuce as Voltron: “individual vehicles joined together to form a giant super funk robot”. I, however, would give that moniker to Chapter 2.
Early Saturday afternoon at Uncle Charlie’s Porch Stage (arguably the best sounding stage at the festival), Eric Krasno, Adam Deitch, Nigel Hall, and Louis Cato joined forces to provide a wake up call to any Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park campers that might have overslept. WAKE UP! Chapter 2 at 2:25 p.m., The Funky Meters at 3:30, The New Mastersounds at 5, Medeski, Scofield, Martin & Wood at 6:30, Lettuce at 8, The Trey Anastasio Band at 9:30, and Dumpstaphunk’s Dumpstajam at midnight. There was no time to waste. And that was only 2 of the 7 stages operating that day! Not to mention that the music started at 11:30 a.m. and wouldn’t be stopping until 5 a.m.
I can’t say much about this group that you can’t find out by watching the videos. (Here at Funk It we like to let the content do the talking.) But I will point out that Louis Cato was the definitive all star of the entire festival. As far as I know, he played bass with Chapter 2, drums and percussion with fSnarky Puppy, trombone and bass at the Dumsptajam, drums with Dumpstaphunk the next night, and percussion and bass at the Tree House After Party Jam Session.
Seeing as this was the first full fledged Chapter 2 show with this lineup in over 7 months, they came out energized and at full force.
Here are the videos in raw HD with audio from my external mic: