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Published: 2013/03/30
by Sam D'Arcangelo

The New Mastersounds’ Groove Alchemy

That’s part of the appeal. With a lot of bands, if you’ve seen them once you’ve kind of seen them. With jambands its different.

Eddie: Yeah, there’s always going to be something different there and you have to make it that way. There was a guy last week. He was in Charlotte, Athens, Charleston, and then San Francisco for four nights. Maybe he’s here. I haven’t spotted his t-shirt.

Joe: I saw somebody who was at the Boom Boom Room the other night, who came up to me and Pete.

Eddie: It’s crazy how people travel for shows and follow you around. Not in a weird way follow you around. I mean it is kind of weird. [Laughs]

I saw you guys in New Orleans a couple weeks are at the Funky Meters show, and I saw you (Eddie) at the Blue Nile with Nikki Glaspie and some of the Soul Rebels guys. Does the music and culture of New Orleans influence you guys at all?

Eddie: Definitely. Since we’ve been going there—first time was like 2007, which was actually Joe’s first gig with the band.

Joe: First trip was Jazzfest pretty much. Which was amazing. We did a gig on a front porch down by the fair grounds.

Eddie: Which people still talk about.

Joe: We had a big Union Jack behind the stage.

Eddie: Which we were really uncomfortable about. We were like, “We’re not nationalists” [Laughs]. I love—As you said, that Sunday night thing when the Soul Rebels were just hanging out. Then I’m like, “You got your horns with you,” and they’re like “yeah, yeah,” and they come up and play. That whole culture of people—there’s a sit in culture, but it’s even more relaxed there. It’s not even like they’re sitting in, it’s like having a conversation with them. Like you bumped into them at the bar, you just run into them on stage. It’s very organic, very natural, I love that about it.

Are you guys going to be at Jazzfest this year?

Eddie: Yeah, we’re going to be doing the House of Blues second weekend. Kind of usual Friday, Saturday late-night slots. I’m definitely going to be there the first weekend. I’ve got a show lined up for Eddie Roberts’ West Coast Sounds, which is the drummer and the keyboard played you saw at the Blue Nile, Jamal Watson and a horn section as well. That’s going to be at One Eyed Jacks the first weekend, that Saturday.

What’s next for you guys?

Eddie: We’re done now for this trip that we’ve just done. Everyone is going back to their respective homes. The next thing will be Jazzfest.

Joe: We’ve got a couple of European shows before then.

Eddie: That’s right. And we have to renew our work visa so we can come back to the U.S. and hopefully they’ll agree and let us back in. Then we have a couple of festivals lined up in June, I think Chicago and Denver. In August we’re going to be doing Equifunk Festival, we’re going to be doing Barefoot in West Virginia. Right after Jazzfest we’re doing the Purple Hatter’s Ball in Live Oak, which is where Bear Creek Festival happens. Terminal West in Atlanta around then too. Things aren’t a hundred percent confirmed, things are getting announced with the festivals, but the best thing is to just check our listings and see where we’re playing. Just keep an eye out for us, we’re going to be around. I’m going to be out and about with the West Coast Sounds later this year, if you plug that for me.

Joe: I’m determined to spend more time in the U.S. this year and I’m going to try and do a recording following Eddie’s footsteps a little bit.

Eddie: With some American guys, some Colorado guys.

Joe: It would be great to use some New Orleans guys actually. There’s a studio in Nashville that’s been recommended to me. They’ve got a grand piano. I’m just going to try and get some stuff going. In between New Mastersounds tours there’s so much good music going on over here to be involved with.

Eddie: There are so many great players that we’ve come into contact with that we want to make music with. The more established we’ve become, the easier that’s getting.

Joe: It’s a great scene over here. Simon and I are the only ones that live in the U.K. Without kids—I think it’s a great time to move over here. [Laughs]

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