Percussive A Cappella Jazz
Vocal music has a long tradition in jazz, and a new CD by the Bay Area ensemble SLAMMIN shows that tradition moving into new territory. – NPR
Slammin All-Body Band is a powerhouse sextet from Oakland, CA, performing a fresh mix of a cappella singing, beatboxing and body music. Deeply rooted in Jazz, Funk, R&B and World Music grooves, this ferociously talented ensemble creates soulful sounds infused with infectious harmonies and lightening-fast improvisations, percussively punctuated by beatboxing and body music — the kinetic component that sets SLAMMIN apart and on the cutting edge of a cappella performance.
Bringing together some of California’s most inventive singers . . . the multigenerational ensemble combines the improvisational imperative of a jazz combo with an expansive repertoire of reggae, funk, bebop and soul. . . inspiring gasps of amazement from the audience . . . known for its impromptu acts and finely honed arrangements of soul-drenched pieces. – LA TIMES
Slammin’s debut CD includes highly original interpretations of tunes by Toots & The Maytals, Sly Stone, Stevie Wonder, Miles Davis and others. Part formal studio performances and part spontaneous improvisations recorded live in concert — their music is rowdy, funky, humorous, vibrant and fresh; their material is old school, contemporary and of the moment.
Some of the most exciting, spirit and soul grabbing music I’ve heard in a long time. Don’t let me forget inspiring. – Babatunde Lea
2006 Highlights include: SF Jazz Summerfest, North Beach Jazz Festival, Jazz at Pearl’s, Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) Jazz Series, Yerba Buena Gardens Festival.
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Meet the Band
Keith Terry is a percussionist/rhythm dancer well known for his innovative body music that literally incorporates solid rhythm in a high energy dance. The Artistic Director of Crosspulse, Keith has created large-scale cross-cultural performance projects that blur the line between music and dance: the Crosspulse Percussion Ensemble, the Body Tjak projects with Indonesian choreographer/composer I Wayan Dibia, and Professor Terry’s Circus Band Extraordináire. Keith has collaborated with numerous artists, including Bobby McFerrin, Robin Williams, the Bobs, the Turtle Island String Quartet and the original Jazz Tap Ensemble. He has recorded several albums and videos, all available through Crosspulse Records & Video.
Steve Hogan has cultivated both his beat boxing and bass playing with the Afro-Latin Hip Hop band O Maya, driving dance floors around the Bay Area. Born and raised in the Bay Area, Steve developed a great love of Jazz, R&B, Latin and World music. His parents, long time members of Gamelan Sekar Jaya, exposed him to a huge variety of music from around the globe, through annual travels to far flung places. He has played bass with many groups, including Goapele, The Coup, and Heuman Flavor.
Bryan Dyer’s deep bass straddles the vocal and rhythm sections with power and finesse. A multi-instrumentalist, Bryan has played trumpet, percussion and baritone horn, while growing up singing in the Church, and later, with the Oakland Youth Chorus. Bryan has appeared in musical theater, on radio and television. He currently performs with SoVoSo, Streetsounds, and the R&B group 510.
Zoe Ellis’ dramatic and colorful voice is well known to Bay Area and overseas music fans. Reviewers describe her as “a resourceful and inventive vocalist.” Zoe sang for many years with the Bay Area Funk band the Mofessionals. Always dynamic on and off stage, Zoe’s credits include live performances with the Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir, Donald Byrd, Phil Lesh and Friends, and as the leader of her own quartet, The Zoe Ellis Group.
Kenny Washington astounds audiences with his freedom-play approach over a more than 4 octave range. A native of New Orleans, Kenny developed his deep love of music singing gospel in the Baptist church. Since the age of 22, Kenny has been performing professionally both traditional and contemporary Jazz, Classical, R&B and Pop. In San Francisco since 1995, Kenny is the featured vocalist at Mark Hopkins Intercontinental Hotel. Kenny emulates the classic scat styles of Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughn, infusing colors of Stevie Wonder and Donny Hathaway, with a secret ingredient of humor.
Destani Wolf’s raw belting tones and rhythmic energy consistently stun audiences. With deep inspiration from Latin music, Hip Hop and Reggae, Destani adds an urban texture through vocal ambience, scratching, and embodying the horn section. She performs and records with many groups based in the Bay Area, including the Afro-Latin Hip Hop group O Maya, the a cappella group SoVoSo, Bobi Cespedes, Omar Sosa, and John Santos. Destani appears on SF Bay, the John Santos recording nominated for a Grammy in 2003. An accomplished lyricist and teacher, Destani tours nationally and internationally.