Lettuce

Boarding House Park
40 French Street
Lowell, MA Venue Information
Buy Tickets Saturday June 23, 2018 7:30 PM
Special Guest: Soule Monde

$35 in advance / $135 premium / $40 day of concert
No ticket fees!




For more than two decades, Lettuce have brought a new vitality to classic funk, matching their smooth and soulful grooves with a hip-hop-inspired urgency and mastery of beat. Now, on their fourth studio album Crush, drummer Adam Deitch, guitarists Adam Smirnoff and Eric Krasno, bassist Erick "Jesus" Coomes, keyboardist Neal Evans, saxophonist Ryan Zoidis, and trumpet player Eric Bloom deepen that sound by channeling the sonic freedom and infectious energy of their incendiary live show.

Produced by Lettuce and recorded/mixed by Joel Hamilton at Brooklyn's Studio G, Crush first came to life on the road, with the band developing new material and testing it out live as they toured. "We've all noticed that our music goes into a lot of different directions onstage, and we wanted to capture that in a way that we never really have before," says Coomes, who names classic psychedelia and '90s hip-hop among Lettuce's key inspirations on Crush. "It's definitely more wide-open in terms style, but it still stays true to the funk."

The follow-up to 2012's Fly, Crush finds Lettuce brilliantly infusing their psychedelic and hip-hop sensibilities into bass-heavy funk. With its spidery guitar work and hypnotic beats, "Phyllis" is a delicately sprawling epic that embodies what Deitch refers to as "a chill-hop vibe that's kind of the flip-side of all that powerful uptempo funk that people might expect from us." On "Get Greasy," Lettuce give a nod to the groove-fueled EDM subgenre known as future funk, building off its highly danceable rhythm with a blissfully loose and horn-laced arrangement. And on "He Made a Woman Out of Me," guest vocalist Alecia Chakour lends her bluesy growl to a scorching take on Bobbie Gentry's 1970 country-soul classic.

According to Lettuce, that sense of unity and togetherness has much to do with a camaraderie that's only intensified over the lifespan of the band. Formed in 1992, when several band members attended a summer program at Boston's Berklee College of Music as teenagers, Lettuce was founded on a shared love of legendary funk artists like Earth, Wind & Fire and Tower of Power. After returning to Berklee as undergrads in 1994, Lettuce started playing in local clubs and steadily built up a following that soon extended to cities across the country and then throughout the world. Releasing their studio debut Outta Here in 2002 and its follow-up album Rage! in 2009, the band dedicated the coming years to balancing their frequent touring with involvement in a host of other musical endeavors (including Evans and Krasno's role as founding members of acclaimed soul/jazz trio Soulive).

In recent years, Lettuce have watched their fan base expand as they've hit bigger and bigger stages and earned their name as a can't-miss festival act. And in making Crush, the band had no trouble harnessing the spirit of their explosive live show. "Some of these shows we've played over the past couple years have been so amazing, it's like you go home a different person," says Coomes. "I'm sure remembering those moments in our minds and our hearts helped bring out something special when we were recording these new songs."

So while Crush offers everything from all-out party jams to headphone-ready journeys into space funk, each track was born from an unabashed joy and love of live performance. "That energy we get when it's prime time and we're about to go onstage and we're just excited beyond belief - that all came out on this new album," says Deitch. "There's a feeling that the band is rising, and it's a really beautiful thing."



Find more info at: lettucefunk.com



Special Guest: Soule Monde

Soule Monde is avant funk erupting from the syncopated minds of power drummer Russ Lawton + B3 wizard Ray Paczkowski. An ideal union of swagger and raw talent, the duo is cemented into an indestructible pocket, where bold improvisational leaps by either player are met by a near-telepathic response from the other. This is fluid funk, crafted for the dance floor but supported by an extensive grasp of jazz improvisation.

Members of Soule Monde have appeared at Bonnaroo, Austin City Limits, on Saturday Night Live, David Letterman, Jay Leno, Conan O'Brien and Jimmy Fallon, and have shared the stage with Carlos Santana, Rolling Stones, Trey Anastasio, Dave Matthews, Victor Wooten, Mike Gordon, Viperhouse + Strangefolk.

Paczkowski has an intrepid knowledge of the Hammond B3, playing it as fearlessly as Han Solo flies the Millennium Falcon through an asteroid field, while his left hand lays down bass lines on the clavinet with the ferocity of the meanest four-string, soul-cat.

Lawton is constantly responding to his partner's attacks - pushing the groove further and deeper while holding the pocket like he's handcuffed to the snare. Don't expect the beat to drop with Soule Monde, and at the same time don't expect to get stuck in one groove. Quite simply, this is the jazz-duo your parents warned you about.

Russ Lawton has been a staple of the Vermont music scene for years. He's collaborated with a vast array of VT acts, including Mike Gordon, The Grippo Funk Band, and Strangefolk, and has been touring and recording with T.A.B. since 1998. He's credited with co-writing the Grammy-nominated song "First Tube" which appeared on Phish's 2000 album, Farmhouse.

Ray Paczkowski has been involved with a number of lauded acts over the years, first gaining recognition in the mid 90's as a member of the legendary Vermont act, Viperhouse, and later on with his power trio, Vorcza. He toured and recorded with Dave Matthews & Friends for 3 years, and has been the keyboardist for T.A.B. (Trey Anastaio Band) since 2001.





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