Ghost-Note April 22, 2017 Whirled Pies Eugene, Oregon

Ghost-Note April 22, 2017 Whirled Pies – Eugene, Oregon
By Andy Goldfinger

Another outstanding night at Whirled Pies in Downtown Eugene.  An evening with Ghost-Note which features two of the literal driving forces fDSC_0464or the Grammy Award winning band Snarky Puppy.  Nate Werth and Robert Searight drummer and percussionist with Snarky Puppy put on a show that was filled with a groove that is tough to put into words, but suffice to say the feeling was spectacular.

Musically this pair is more than a dynamic duo.  Their credits speak for themselves, but I will take a moment to elaborate.  Mr. Werth, no relation to the baseball player, is one of the most inventive and versatile percussionists currently in our path of vision.  Coming from the great state of IndDSC_0518iana, his approach to a myriad of musical styles, as well as an innovative use of a variety of percussion, offers his sound to be unique. He attended the prestigious University of North Texas where he refined his technical skills and studied with legendary musicians and educators, including Poovalur Sriji, Jose Aponte, Gideon Alorwoyie, Paul Rennick, Christopher Deane, and Mark Ford.

Nate has been actively recording and touring worldwide for the past decade. He has worked with internationally acclaimed artists such as Snarky Puppy, David Crosby, Lalah Hathaway, Susana Baca, The Lee Boys, and The Metropole Orchestra.

Robert “Sput” Searight is one of the most talented and versatile drummers andDSC_0505 producers in modern music.  With a family of musicians based in Dallas, Texas, Searight came up alongside artists like Erykah Badu, Norah Jones, and Roy Hargrove at the world-famous Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing Arts.  He won a Grammy Award at age 18 with his own group, God’s Property, who chDSC_0521anged the face of Gospel music with their debut album.  Artists like Snoop Dogg, Erykah Badu, Celine Dion, Justin Timberlake, P Diddy, Myron Butler, and Kirk Franklin employ Sput’s talents regularly.

With Ghost-Note the gents have assembled some of the finest young musicians to get on the stage.  The horn section features the stylings of Sylvester Onyjiaka who was last seen playing with a guy named Prince, DSC_0476and tending the flute, tenor, and baritone sax.  Then manning the other horn you have Jonathan Mones (Funky Knuckles, RC and the Gritz) playing flute, alto, and tenor saxophone.  On the keys Justin Stanton (Snarky Puppy) and manning the bass for the last time A.J. Brown.

The band DSC_0516tore through songs for their debut effort “Fortified” and also tantalized the cDSC_0507rowd with songs from an upcoming album soon to be released.  Two sets of unbridled jazz and funk.

If you live in Eugene and have not been to Whirled Pies downtown for a show, this is something that must change.  Talk about comfort, you want tables to sit at,DSC_0453 yep.  How about a nice comfy couch, got it.  Dance floor, check.  Beer and food, yes sir.  And, the proprietors and crew, just exceptional.  Keep your eyes peeled and come to a show at Whirled Pies.

Check out all the photos from that night.

Farnell Newton & the Othership Connection – April 19, 2017 Whirled Pies – Eugene, Oregon

Farnell Newton & the Othership Connection – April 19, 2017 Whirled Pies – Eugene, Oregon
By Andy Goldfinger

Wednesday night I had the privilege of shooting photos and doing a little writing on a band fronted by DSC_0356mad trumpeter Farnell Newton along with the ever-present Othership Connection.  If the name has a familiar ring to it, could be that among the myriad of artists that Farnell has had the opportunity to collaborate with Bootsy Collins is at the forefront, an original member of the Mothership of Funk.

Farnell has DSC_0375established himself as one of the most versatile musicians in the arena and that would explain the pedigree from his short list of collaborators that include Stevie Wonder, Ronald Isley, Cee-Lo Green, Karl Denson, Gladys Knight, George Duke, Lalah Hathaway, Chaka Khan, Bootsy Collins, Lettuce, Earth, Wind and Fire just to name a few.  his sense of love for the music, his band, and the audience is clearly on display throughout the set.

With a dynamic sound reminiscent of the old funk mixed with a new and powerful sound the Othership Connection provides a groove of funkified proportions. DSC_0406 Some might call it a revitalization others a continuation, but regardless they are building a tremendous reputation as a band that can go all night, and Wednesday at Whirled Pies was no different.  They tore through a couple of Prince songs in preparation for their upcoming show in Portland Friday April 21st and closed the first set with Maceo’s “Shakin With Everything You Got”.  The range and sound of the band was exceptional.

The band?  Wow.  Guitarist Agyel Ptah – Hotep Marshall was just electric alDSC_0400l night long with thoughtful soulful solos and an amazing rhythm that got those in attendance moving and grooving.  Couple that with drummer Tyronne Hendrix and bass player R.J. Reyes, the recipe was set, and the chefs were just cookin.

DSC_0383Kyle Molitor began playing trombone at 12 years old and is currently spending his time with one Bootsy Collins, Doo Doo Funk All-Stars, and the Rose City Horns.  He may be the youngest member of the band, but guitarist Agyel Ptah – Hotep Marshall brings an originality that melds funk and DSC_0378rock into a blissful funkination of sound and imagery.  On the vocals the incredible Arietta Ward, wDSC_0424ho snag with passion and love.   Now back to the rhythm section.  Banging on the skins is drummer Tyrone Hendrix, one of the most sought after drummer’s period, and Wednesday night was clear evidence as to why.   The bass was being manned by R.J. Reyes.  Wednesday was his first gig with the DSC_0407band and he just killed it.

With an album in the works the future looks limitless for this band.

I would also like to commend Whirled Pies on turning the downtown pie place in to an outstanding venue to see a show.  The sound is excellent and the place has pretty much everything you could want from a food and drinking perspective.  Cannot wait for the next show.  This is steadily becoming one of Eugene’s premier venues for music.

Check out all the pics here!