Big Daddy & Red Hot Java
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WHO: Progressive Blues pioneers "Big Daddy & Red Hot Java" (from Tallahassee, Florida USA) return to Europe a sixth time with their powerful ministry of Progressive Urban Blues! They are the pioneers of this 6 piece Blues gumbo peppered with Soul, Funk, Hip Hop, Jazz and Rock. "Big Daddy & Red Hot Java" has one CD out, "The 24th Hour," with another, "Firebrewed," released June 22, 2001 They combine tunes from both their CDs with Blues nuggets from the "cannon" for a two-plus hour live show will "knock you out!"
WHAT: "Big Daddy & Red Hot Java's" Summer 2001 European tour features their "Booty Quakin' Soul Shakin' Progressive Urban Blues" in a whirlwind tour of England, France, Germany, Austria, and Holland. This is a pilgrimage for the band.
WHY: "'Cause it's a powerful ministry of Blues that simply can't be denied!"
HOW: Visit one (or all) of their shows, leave your troubles at the door, lace up your dancing boots, and get wired and percolating with "Big Daddy & Red Hot Java's" powerful ministry of Blues. As Big Daddy proclaims in a cut from their new CD due out this summer, "Ain't nothin' but a party and I hope it never ends!"
INFO & QUOTES: Says lead singer and rhythm guitarist Randall "Big Daddy" Webster; "Audiences always seem to get gyrating when we play. It's wild to watch 'em pulse to the music. We go deep and get it in their bones. It's earthy music that understands the primal elements of humanity, or lack of humanity. "Big Daddy & Red Hot Java" treasures those things that can't be taken away... your family, friends, spirituality, music, art, education, and most importantly your soul. You have to celebrate these things... make a joyful noise, dance 'til the sunrise reminds us that we're all ridin' the same cycle of life. It's a blessing. I think in Irish they say 'Ceol Dan Anum' or 'Music For The Soul!" Webster is from Wheaton, Illinois (just outside Chicago) and used to hang out with Blues Brother John Belushi as a kid. Later he dug deep into the music tracking down his legendary Blues heros in small clubs around the Windy City. That's where he went to school on great America's indigenous music of the Blues. Blessed with a 4 octave voice, "Big Daddy" is often called the Pavarotti of Blues.
Lead touring guitarist and young gun (18 years and going on 50) Forrest "Gump" Greene says; "We play in the "zone"... and it sometimes it gets freaky. It's when you don't think.. it just happens. The music goes straight from your heart into the instrument and out comes notes we can't fully take credit for. It's almost like we're channeling the spirit(s) that built our music... Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, Albert King, Danny Gattan, Stevie Ray Vaughn, and many others we probably never heard of but who's energy flows through our tunes. All I know is it sure feels good!" Greene hails from Wakulla, Florida; home to "The Swamp Thing" and early Tarzan movies with Johnny Weismueller.
Bassist John "Big Tone" Toney adds, "We have this thing... we always hope Art shows up. He's this little fellow who's always inspiring, never restrained, and sometimes a bold and mischievous spirit. When Art dances around our music it reaches beyond craft. We just hope we have the tools to take the music wherever Art wants to go. It can be a little scary, and sometimes it's a dangerous place, but always exciting! I guess that's why we call it Progressive Blues! It's Blues with a contemporary feel... thick grooves with kicks and hits."
Drummer J. "General" Mills says, "I'm 'down with it.' When I first auditioned for 'Big Daddy & Red Hot Java' (Mills is "Big Daddy & Red Hot Java's" sixteenth drummer) I worked up all my Blues shuffles trying to fit in. These dudes kept asking for Hip Hop, Jazz, Latin, Techno, R&B, Soul, Funk and other rhythms. They do shuffles also, but their (and now my) attitude is that it's a living breathing music. You've gotta soak up the influences around you, distill them, and make 'em your own. It's Blues, but nothin' like I anticipated. I think we scare some Blues traditionalists and that's probably a good thing. If the music ain't livin' -- it's dead!"
Sax Player Marques "Thang" Adams has played with Isaac Hayes, Phat Cat, Shirley King, and several other top Soul, R&B. Gospel, and Blues artists. A proud student of Florida A&M University's world reknowned music department, he is walking in the footsteps of the likes of Nat "Cannonball" Aderly and Marcus Roberts. Says Adams, "Big Daddy likes to push the Blues envelope, but he NEVER forgets where the music comes from. I guess all those years of teaching Blues-In-Schools has given "Big Daddy" a unique perspective to teach Blues history AND lead it into the future. I dig it because he gives us room to explore within his tunes."
Trombone Player Saunders "Preacha" Sermons has more control over his instrument that many griselled New Orleans veterans. Sermons says, "When Kez (Marques Adams) and I lock it's magical. We seem to be intuitive on our licks. We like to bring all our horn influences to "Big Daddy & Red Hot Java" including Tower of Power, Maseo, the Memphis Horns, and the Marsalis brothers. It blends well with Big Daddy's Progressive Urban Blues! I guess we play Blues where Chicago and New Orleans meet."
GET MORE INFORMATION ON WEB at our old web site at www.bigdaddyandredhotjava.com . Our new updated web site will be available soon at http://www.bigdaddyblues.com Download "Big Daddy & Red Hot Java" MP3, photos, biographies, and much more. It should answer most all of your questions about "Big Daddy & Red Hot Java's" ministry of Progressive Urban Blues.