Sunday, October 28, 2012

The Stepkids light up The Drake Sunday

After playing a short set opening for Kimbra at the Danforth Music Hall last night, Connecticut's Stepkids will get to stretch out with a headlining gig at The Drake tonight (with Slakadeliqs opening at 9 pm) where the Stones Throw signees will be better able showcase the strengths of the group's three singer/songwriters. “A lot of what excites us about this band is this band itself,” says bassist and keyboardist Dan Edinberg. “It’s not either of us; it’s about creating an entity where the entity itself is what’s important.” As a result, every song on the Stepkids self-titled debut album is written with equal input from each member. “All three of us write and all three of us sing,” says Jeff Gitelman, who resigned from touring as Alicia Keys' guitarist to concentrate full-time on recording the Stepkids self-titled debut album. Drummer Tim Walsh continues, “There's an equal split in the creative process. Any lyric, any melody, any idea could have been done by any of us.”

This approach comes from more than a decade of musical experimentation and experience. Raised on the East Coast jazz and R&B circuit, individual band members went on to share stages with 50 Cent and Lauryn Hill, tour internationally with indie punk band Zox, score movies and commercials and produce solo albums. The Stepkids groove is an amalgam of punk and jazz, West African and 1960s folk, electro-soul and old school R&B, deep funk and modern classical.

The band produce, engineer and record themselves on a reel-to-reel. There’s no singular icon, no singular sound, and no singular way of making it happen for the Stepkids. It’s psychedelia for the 21st century, where the focus is on the whole.

"Sweet Salvation" is the first single off The Stepkids forthcoming album Troubadour (due in 2013), and the title of their new 4-track 12-inch, Sweet Salvation EP. The video was directed by Jesse Mann who helped develop the Stepkids' light show and continues to tour with the band as their "fourth member." If you've seen them perform, you'll know why he's considered such an integral part of the Stepkids' concept. Jesse enlisted Big Nazo’s puppets along with friends from his early work in the puppet/prop world for Broadway, TV and Film. Think H.R Pufnstuf with three part harmonies. Have a look...

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