The Patti Parks Band has been mashing swing, R&B and blues into a hard-driving hybrid since forming in 2003. The group won the annual “Memphis Bound” blues competition in 2006, which turned out to be a banner year for Parks, as trumpeter Gerry Youngman made Buffalo his home that year. He has been bringing his stellar chops and understanding of jazz harmony to the band ever since.
Youngman is only one of several virtuosos making the Patti Parks Band their home, though, as the release of “Cheat’n Man” makes plain. In addition to Parks’ soulful and sensual singing, the Patti Parks Band also boasts the talents of bassist Nick Veltri, guitarist John Riggi, drummer Pete Holquin, tenor saxophonist Nick Salamone and baritone sax player Paul Vanacore.
Together, this ensemble cranks out an uplifting, ebullient blend of Chicago blues, Memphis soul and funky R&B.
Parks’ reputation as a riveting live performer already has earned her considerable local acclaim – as well as some deserved attention from DJ Anita West on her weekly WBFO FM blues show. The nine original tunes that make up “Cheat’n Man” will surely make a welcome addition to the band’s sets. Heard performing on the disc are drummer Gary Mallaber on drums, keyboardist Ken Kauffman and Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra cellist Roman Mekinulov.
Parks and her band celebrate the release of “Cheat’n Man” at 7 p.m. Friday in the Cove (4701 Transit Road, Depew). Check out www.pattiparks.com for more information on “Cheat’n Man.”
Kellogg goes it alone
After 10 years, seven CD releases and more than 1,000 shows, Stephen Kellogg and the Sixers have gone on hiatus, leaving the singer, guitarist and songwriter to concentrate on the solo career he has pursued intermittently over the years. The sturdy mixture of American, folk, rock and alt-country that Kellogg and the band produced over their decade together earned the group a considerable cult following, one nourished and expanded on the strength of its live shows.
Kellogg continues in the Americana troubadour tradition with “Blunderstone Rookery,” an album he produced with collaborators Kit Karlson and Mike Mogis (the latter of Bright Eyes fame) and the help of musician-friends borrowed from bands such as Sugarland, Nickel Creek and OAR. At the emotional center of the album sits “Thanksgiving,” an epic story-song that traces one man’s life from birth to death with a keen eye for detail and an empathy-soaked ear for the significance of the minutiae of life. It’s understandable, when listening to this 10-minute piece, that Kellogg has claimed that recording “Blunderstone Rookery” has been the most significant experience of his musical life.
Kellogg, with guests the Saint Johns and Caroline Brooks, performs at 8 p.m. Monday in the Ninth Ward at Babeville (341 Delaware Ave.). Tickets are $20 (box office, Tickets.com).