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Robert Randolph & the Family Band | on tour thru 12.31.06

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Randolph blends smooth jazz with broken, funky vocals and exuberant instrumentals. There are also many spiritual notes struck in numerous songs; perhaps because of Randolph's church-going childhood and steel guitar upbringing.

 

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Almost six years ago, Robert Randolph was just beginning his career as a club regular in New York City. After spending months playing steel guitar outside his church in Orange, N.J., he was discovered at the Sacred Steel Convention in Florida, where he was quickly whisked into the welcoming arms of various public relations people.

Well, not really. It was still a long and tedious process for Randolph. After meeting both Jim Markel (the first to "discover" him) and Gary Waldman (a close PR friend of Markel's), Randolph was finally introduced to Matt Hickey, the talent buyer at Manhattan's Bowery Ballroom, at an audition. Initially booking Randolph with the North Mississippi Allstars, Hickey later assigned Randolph to play with greats Medeski, Martin & Wood; the two bands played to audiences of thousands.

After enjoying a satisfying solo career for a few years, Randolph teamed up with a few of his cousins-Danyell Morgan on bass, Marcus Randolph on drums, and John Ginty on the Hammond B-3 organ-to create the Family Band. Following opening gigs for the Derek Trucks Band, Karl Denson's Tiny Universe, Soulive, and other high-profile blues, jazz-funk, and jam bands, Robert Randolph & the Family Band began headlining gigs. Their latest release, 2006's Colorblind, follows critics' faves Live at the Wetlands 2001 and 2003's Unclassified.

So, there's the brief history. Randolph blends smooth jazz with broken, funky vocals and exuberant instrumentals. There are also many spiritual notes struck in numerous songs; perhaps because of Randolph's church-going childhood and steel guitar upbringing: "I was lost/ I thought the losing dice were tossed/ I didn't know where to go/ I didn't have no one to turn to/ I'm glad I found you just in time/ Won't miss those things that I left behind."

With spiritual lyrics like this, it's no wonder that this band has created such a positive, loyal following. | Kaylen Hoffman INFO: http://www.robertrandolph.net

 

Tour dates: 11/9: St. Louis, MO | The Pageant; 11/10: Chicago, IL | The Riviera Theatre; 11/11: Royal Oak, MI | Royal Oak Music Theatre; 11/13: Toronto, ON | Opera Theatre; 11/14: Montreal, QC | La Tulipe; 11/17: New York, NY | Roseland; 12/31: Sayreville, NJ | Starland Ballroom

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