As of late, NYC has been host to some of the best private shows put on by fans who have circumvented the normal "booking by venues attitude" and gone forth and created the shows and line ups that they themselves want to see. Brought to us by Chickawah Productions we have seen the likes of Robert Randolph, The Squad, and Topaz all paired together. Jon Walsh has been bringing in the sounds of New Orleans with Papa Gros Funk and many more bands. This Thursday, June 21, we again have a great night of music planned at the Lion's Den, this time by the musicians themselves.

Orchestrating the whole event is Ian McHugh, guitarist and founding member of the funk band EmCQ. Looking to round up a crew of local musicians that they (EmCQ) had been looking to play with, McHugh began bouncing the idea around months ago of lining up the bands himself to ensure a well rounding night of funky music from beginning to end. The result? A night of music featuring Angel Baby Band (with Leanne Durkin, the Stephen Kellogg Band, Vermin Furley, and of course, EmCQ, featuring the ever talented Jen Durkin on lead vocals.

The music made by The Stephen Kellogg Band, later to be called Stephen Kellogg and the Root Cellar Band, is electric folk fueled by the college keg party’s and late night clubs that enable them to stretch out and experiment with interactive playing. The band itself has opened for the likes of Lori McKenna, Pat McGee, Jeffrey Gaines and Erin McKeown, as well as played Riverfest with Ben Harper and Sonic Youth.

Hailing from the Island, a band whose reputation precedes them is Vermin Furley, whose sound is reminiscent of the atmospheric elements of Pink Floyd, the jazzy, jam-laden keys of God Street Wine and the live, free-form spirit of the Allman Brothers. Amongst bands that they have shared the bill with are Bernie Worrell & The Woo Warriors, Schleigho, Ominous Seapods, Umphrey's McGee.

Last but not least, headling the show is a personal favorite of mine, EmCQ. Since the their original lead singer, Javier Colon, moved on to the Derek Trucks Band, this band has been on the search for a permanant lead singer. Fortunately for the band, and for her fans, the talented Jen Durkin has been there along the way to help them out, and rumor has it that this might not just be a temporary thing. Backed by a funky line up consisting of Ian McHugh (guitar), Andy Sanesi (formerly of the hip hop group Fatbag)on drums, Dan Grennes on bass, and an intense horn section featuring Brad Mason (trumpet), Mark Traggessor (bari sax), and Mike Raskin on tenor sax, Jen Durkin is perhaps at her best as she belts out tunes that will have you getting down all night long.

Perhaps the best part about this line up musicians is that is allows NYC music fans to see some talented, up and coming bands all packed together in one night of stupendous music. For more details, log on to the bands' websites, and better yet, head to the Lion's Den and check it out for yourself.

Kristin Ciccone
JamBase NYC Correspondent
Go See Live Music!

[Published on: 6/18/01]

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