Pharoahe Monch, Roy Hargrove and James Hurt at the Royal Family Ball
New York’s Terminal 5 hosted the second annual Royal Family Ball on Saturday night. Part of the traveling Royal Family Ball events, the show featured intertwined bands Soulive and Lettuce as well as special guests Pharoahe Monch, Rahzel, Raul Midón, Roy Hargrove and The Shady Horns. Keyboardist James Hurt also sat in on the evening’s final number.
Lettuce guitarist Adam Smirnoff opened the show with a DJ set, before guitarist Raul Midón officially kicked things off with a solo set. Early on, members of the crowd were also spotted wearing gold paper crowns, paying homage to the evening’s theme. Soulive was the evening’s first host band to play, offering a mix of new songs like “DIG,” old standards and material from their Beatles cover album Rubber Soulive. Midon and trumpeter Roy Hargrove also joined the trio to play a stirring cover of John Lennon’s “Jealous Guy.” After Soulive’s set, beatboxer Rahzel offered a 15-minute interlude performance,
Lettuce closed the night with a guest-heavy performance that nodded to both their hip-hop and funk roots. Rapper Pharoahe Monch took the stage for hard-hitting songs like “Desire” and his newest song, “Push.” Hargrove also returned for“Breakout,” and surprise guest James Hurt (keyboards) set up his small synthesizer keyboard while Lettuce jammed around him for a crazy “Sam Huff’s Flying Ragin’ Machine.”
The next Royal Family Ball will take place at Boston’s House of Blues on October 21.