Gig: Hot 8 Brass Band – Eric’s, Liverpool – 03 Mar 2012

Posted on: Wednesday, Jan 9, 2013

£17.50 Ticketmaster or Box Office 0151-236 9994
Eric’s , 9 Mathew Street, Liverpool, Liverpool, L2 6RE
Sunday 3rd March 2013

Eric’s is about to get hot and brassy as the Hot 8 fly in with their spiced up gumbo funk and hip hop spiced up with authentic New Orleans street band flavours.

The Hot 8 Brass Band is the world-renowned New Orleans based brass band that blends hip-hop, jazz and funk styles with traditional New Orleans brass sounds with stunning results.

Playing New Orleans clubs and traditional jazz funerals and street marches, in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, the Hot 8 Brass Band was propelled into the international spotlight by an appearance in Spike Lee’s film When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts. Since then the band has toured the world with their authentic and totally unique New Orleans street sound. Famous for their blistering, high energy performances – expect them to tear the roof off of the venue at this much-anticipated Liverpool visit.

New Orleans’ Hot 8 Brass Band was founded in 1995 by tuba player Bennie Pete, Jerome “Bay Bay” Jones (trombone) and Harry “Swamp Thang” Cook (bass drum) to play brass band music professionally. Although many of the current members began playing together in high school, over time the line-up has inevitably shifted and changed, and continues to do so. But any incarnation of Hot 8 Brass Band will boast eight or nine players of the highest rate, bringing the passion and noise through a bevy of trombones, saxophones, trumpets, snare and bass drums, all buoyed up by the immense tuba basslines of band leader Bennie Pete. These musicians over the years have been inspired by artists such as Tuba Fats, Leroy Jones, Louis Armstrong, JJ Johnson, Stevie Wonder and Jackie McLean, and have variously recorded and performed with some of those mentioned and more. They also continue to cite each other as influences.

Robert Luis and Paul Jonas of Tru Thoughts first heard Hot 8 Brass Band when Quantic (having got his hands on a rare copy via DJ Concerned) played their cover of “Sexual Healing” in a New York DJ set. Witnessing first hand the unprecedented and spontaneous round of applause that sprang up from the crowd, they knew this band had something special. So they had a scout around for more of Hot 8’s music. The band had previously been signed to the label “Louisiana Red Hot,” a label which had been, along with so much else in New Orleans, all but wiped out by Hurricane Katrina, and much of their previous material had been taken with it.

Over the next few months Tru Thoughts signed Hot 8, and released “Sexual Healing” as a very limited edition single in summer 2007. All 500 copies were snapped up immediately, making it the fastest-selling single in the label’s history. Following a flood of enquiries, the single was then given a wider release on 1st October and the album “Rock with the Hot 8” came out on 15th October 2007 to widespread acclaim. Listen to the elegant jumble of jazz & soul, thrown in a sack with traditional boisterous brass band music and shaken roughly with unmistakable hip hop attitude, and you will know this music could only have come from New Orleans. The band’s first ever UK live dates came in February 2008, with a sell-out tour which blew the minds of audiences up and down the country and won an army of dedicated new fans. The second single, “What’s My Name? (Rock With The Hot 8)” was released at this time, and this rambunctious cover of the Snoop Dogg track was a huge crowd-pleaser and received rave reviews.

Whilst in the UK, Hot 8 Brass Band attracted a phenomenal buzz, appearing on The Culture Show on BBC 2, recording a Maida Vale session for Gilles Peterson’s show on BBC Radio 1, and laying down a couple of tracks with Basement Jaxx. Their music has also featured on a Volkswagen advert. The phenomenal success of the tour prompted a call from the Big Chill festival, where they played a crowd-pleasing set in August 2008 and were picked as a festival highlight by the Observer newspaper, along with a series of other UK dates.

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