Monday, December 10, 2012

One month, three continents

Fred is home recharging after a busy November took him to San Francisco; to Europe for a tour through Germany, France, Switzerland and Italy; and finally to Japan for a magical collaboration.


The New JBs followed up their appearance at the San Francisco Funk Festival with great tour of Europe that included six dates in France, and one each in Germany, Switzerland and Italy. Big thanks to Véronique PHITOUSSI for sharing these first four photos from France. Click here to hear a radio interview Fred did with Alison Hird of RFI. Also enjoy the family photographs from Europe below them.

Keep scrolling for photos from Japan, courtesy of Osaka Monaurail, the top-notch funk band that pianist Ryo Nakata formed 20 years ago to preserve, celebrate and advance the music created by James Brown's funkiest backing band, with Fred as its leader. Thanks to Hennessy Artistry, which allowed Fred to revisit some of his classic JBs tunes with OM in Tokyo as part of the series, The Art of Blending.

Finally, a photo from Fred's singer cousin Song Byrd, who was able to meet up with him in advance of gigs of her own in Tokyo on Dec. 8 & 9. Thanks, Song!
Fred onstage in France. (photo by Véronique PHITOUSSI.)
Gary onstage in France. (photo by Véronique PHITOUSSI.)
Peter onstage in France. (photo by Véronique PHITOUSSI.)
Phillip (and Reggie) onstage in France. (photo by Véronique PHITOUSSI.)

Family photos from Europe.

The New JBs onstage in France.
The New JBs onstage in France.
The New JBs soundchecking in Milan.
The New JBs onstage at the Blue Note in Milan.
Alison Hird of RFI interviews Fred at the Blues Sur Seine Festival.
A kind thank you from our host Steffi at Kuppel in Basel, Switzerland.
Fred with the trombonist of opening band Malted Milk in Cergy, France.
The New JBs with opening band Oazzunk in France.
Fred conducts a workshop at Blues sur Seine.
The New JBs with opening band The Lehmann Brothers in Angouleme, France.
Dwayne, Bruce and Reggie relaxing backstage at La Nef in Angouleme, France.
The New JBs onstage in France.
Fred signage at L'Observatoire in Cergy, France.
Osaka Monaurail photos from Japan.

Fred and Ryo rehearsing with OM.
Fred and Ryo consult during rehearsal.
Fred onstage with OM.
Fred and OM onstage.
Fred posing with OM.
Fred vibing backstage after the show.
Ryo and Fred (photo by Song Williamson)




Tuesday, November 13, 2012

On the road again ...

Fred and the New JBs started their November 2012 tour of Europe in Siegen, Germany, on Saturday night, with a tight performance that foreshadows an excellent time traveling through France and into Switzerland and Italy.

In the audience Saturday were young trombonist Thomas Wiggins and his parents. Thomas, a huge fan of New Orleans and New Orleans jazz, sent Fred an email after his idol Trombone Shorty said he had to check him out. After finding out the band would be in Siegen, he and his folks made plans to be there. Thomas, 9, also sent the photo below and these links of himself: click here and here. Enjoy.

Thomas Wiggins with Fred backstage in Siegen.
Thomas playing with street musicians in New Orleans, where he's getting his parents to take him again, soon.

Also, thanks to Chicago promoter Al Kennedy, as well as videographer  Devin Washington and photographers Debra Meeks and FreDrena Brown, for these additional remembrances of the celebration October 27 for legendary DJ Herb Kent, which featured the New JBs along with The Emotions, The Dramatics and more.

Click here for video of the New JBs performance, and here, here, here, here and here for more video from the huge party. Click here and here for some still photos.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Set for one mo' European tour in 2012

Fred and the New JBs are on their way to Europe, where they will tour for just under two weeks. Many thanks to New JBs trumpeter Gary Winters for compiling these links to the upcoming shows.

November 10th: Siegen, Germany

November 13th: Ris Orangis, France


November 14th: Mantes la jolie, France


November 15th:  Angouleme, France


November 16th: Cergy, France


November 17th: Aulnay-sous-Bois, France


November 18th:  Magny Le Hongre, France


November 19th: Basel, Switzerland


November 20th: Milano, Italy

Savoring San Francisco

Sunset Promotions' San Francisco Funk Festival was a blast for Fred and his New JBs, who welcomed as special guests three of the original JBs: drummers John "Jabo" Starks and Clyde Stubblefield, and bassist Fred Thomas. Opening the show at the Mezzanine was the dynamic Lyrics Born and his band. It was a historic reunion and a funky good time. Enjoy the photos below and click here for more.
 Promoters Robbie Kowal and John Miles with Fred and Lyrics Born.
Clyde and Fred

Fred with the trombonist of the Lyrics Born band.
The Lyrics Born band onstage at the Mezzannine.
The New JBs onstage with Lyrics Born and Fred Thomas.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Set to funk up San Francisco

Fred and his New JBs will be at the San Francisco Funk Festival this Saturday for a historic performance that will include original JBs drummers Jabo Starks, Clyde Stubblefield and bassist Fred Thomas as special guests. Hosting the show will be Bay Area MC Lyrics Born.

Finishing up a busy October

Fred and his New JBs helped Chicago radio personality Herb Kent celebrate his birthday, Oct. 27, with a huge party at the Horseshoe Casino in suburban Hammond, Indiana. Thanks to promoter Al Kennedy for passing along these great photos.

Fred onstage with New JBs guitarist Reggie Ward, trumpeter Gary Winters and saxophonist Ernie Fields Jr.
Steppers and "line steppers" dance in the foreground as seated patrons also enjoy the New JBs performance.
Fred with Herb Kent.
Chicago line steppers having a funky good time. (Photo by Song Byrd).
Before Chicago, the New JBs entertained for two days of the Richmond Folk Festival, Oct. 12-13, where he got to jam with Dr. Michael White, Rahim AlHaj and other Masters of Improvisation, and to visit with his children and grandchildren from the nearby Washington, D.C. area.

The crowd Saturday night in the Dominion Dance Pavilion.
Fred jamming backstage with Dr. Michael White, Rahim AlHaj and Detroit Brooks on banjo.
The Masters of Improvisation workshop.
After the Masters of Improvisation workshop.
Fred with grandson Coleman Britt, 5.
The busy month started out at the Westobou Festival in James Brown's hometown of Augusta, Georgia, Oct. 4, which also featured the Maceo Parker Band and Janelle Monae. Thanks to Gary Gordon, husband of former JB "Bittersweet" background vocalist Kelly Jarrell, for the photos he contributed below.

Fred and the New JBs onstage.
Fred backstage with New JBs saxophonist Ernie Field Jr. and trumpeter Charlton Singleton, with Maceo.
New JBs trumpeter Charlton Singleton, pianist Barney McAll and bassist Dwayne Dolphin backstage.
Maceo Parker Band trombonist Dennis Rollins and Fred backstage with their Rath trombones.
Kelly Jarrell with legendary JB announcer Danny Ray. (photo by Gary Gordon)
Maceo Parker Band/former JB vocalist Martha High with Kelly Jarrell. (photo by Gary Gordon)
Maceo onstage (photo by Gary Gordon)