Billy Martin’s Wicked Knee Release Debut Album
Billy Martin’s Wicked Knee have released their debut full-length album Heels Over Head. The brass band brings together New York City jazz virtuosos Steven Bernstein (trumpet), Curtis Fowlkes (trombone), Marcus Rojas (tuba) and Billy Martin (drums) for a collaboration that seeks to put the “NOLA brass band tradition through an NYC downtown jazz filter.” The album includes takes on The White Stripes’ “The Hardest Button to Button” and Frank London’s “Ghumba Zhumba,” as well as plenty of originals like the ethereal “Chaman’s Interlude” and the politically minded “99%,” which features improvised lyrics by Shelley Hirschy. Wicked Knee’s rendition of “The Hardest Button to Button” can be heard below, and you can read Martin’s reflections on 2012 in part 1 of Jambands.com’s Auld Lang Syne series.
Wicked Knee’s self-titled first release came out in 2011 and featured a few covers as well as some Billy Martin originals, though it was not a full length album. You can watch the band playing Ike Turner’s “I’m Blue”—which appeared on their self-titled release—in the Relix boiler room here.