Sunset Promotions and the San Francisco Funk Festival proudly present the FunkFest at JazzFest series. Five evening and early-morning concerts will take place in New Orleans from Sunday, April 27th through Monday, May 5th. Featured performers include Jurassic 5, Michael Franti & Spearhead, Blackalicious, DJ Cut Chemist, and Zigaboo & Friends, an allstar lineup featuring Meters drummer Zigaboo Modeliste, Robert Walter, Chris Stillwell and Brian Jordan. The series attempts to bring a different flavor to the JazzFest experience, mixing "oldschool" funk with more urban "newschool" sounds and political consciousness. In this uncertain time, Sunset is proud to present these outspoken artists who stake their livelihood on their beliefs.

Sunday, April 27, 2003 [early show] | Doors: 9pm
Headliner: Zigaboo & Friends feat: Zigaboo Modeliste (drums - the Meters), Robert Walter (keys - Greyboy AllStars), Chris Stillwell (bass - Greyboy All Stars), Brian Jordan (guitar - Karl Denson's Tiny Universe) and special guests TBA
Support: Forgotten Souls Brass Band & DJ Motion Potion
Venue: Howlin' Wolf Nightclub | 828 S. Peters St.| New Orleans, LA | 504.522.WOLF | Ages 18+
Tickets: $25 at or 415.389.TIXX, or at

Zigaboo & Friends
Zigaboo Modeliste has long been revered as the "King of the Funky Drums" for his 20+ years of work with legendary New Orleans rhythm masters the Meters. Zig will be joined by three younger players who incorporate similar energy, message and spirit of this elder statesman. Robert Walter (keys) has built a reputation as one of the finest jazz-funk organists on earth for his years of work with the Greyboy AllStars and his own 20th Congress. Chris Stillwell (bass), who played with Walter in the Greyboy AllStars, is known for his superb chops and uncommon musical knowledge. Brian Jordan (guitar), is known as "Jimmy Nolan Jr." for his superb grasp of rhythm guitar and explosive solos he displays on tour with Karl Denson's Tiny Universe. Walter, Stillwell, and Jordan all hail from San Diego and have been playing together on and off for 15 years. This quartet was formed to play the 2002 San Francisco Funk Festival, and issued two blistering sets.
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Friday, May 2, 2003 [early show] Doors: 9pm
Headliner: Michael Franti & Spearhead
Support: Tre Hardsen (of Pharcyde)
Venue: Howlin' Wolf Nightclub | 828 S. Peters St.| New Orleans, LA | 504.522.WOLF | Ages 18+
Tickets: $20 at or 415.389.TIXX, or at

Michael Franti & Spearhead
Michael Franti has long been a central figure in the world of conscious hip hop. His first group, Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy, boasted Charlie Hunter on bass, and tours supporting everyone from U2 to Primus. But Franti cut loose and founded Spearhead in 1994 to focus on a lighter, funkier, world-hop sound. Since then, Spearhead has toured internationally, and released three records, 1994's Home, 1997's Chocolate Supa Highway and 2001's Stay Human. Michael Franti is considered a hero by many for his outspoken political consciousness, and willingness to use his band's popularity to raise money for social causes.
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Tre Hardson
A founding member of the legendary underground West Coast rap group the Pharcyde, Hardson is out on his own, touring with a seven-piece funk band. The MC/producer has long been a fixture in the West Coast rap scene, from his work with the Pharcyde to his time as a choreographer and dancer on the Wayans Brothers In Living Color. Hardson's new group concentrates on a light, world-beat influenced variety of funk and soul.
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Saturday May 3, 2003 [latenite FRIDAY MAY 2]Doors: 1:30 am
Headliner: Blackalicious
Support: The Almighty Senators
Venue: Howlin' Wolf Nightclub | 828 S. Peters St.| New Orleans, LA | 504.522.WOLF | Ages 18+
Tickets: $20 at or 415.389.TIXX, or at

Like Jurassic 5, Blackalicious has long rated as one of the nation's finest "positive tip" hip hop acts. Also like J5, Blackalicious has recently seen its 10 years of hard work begin to turn into commercial success in 2003. Founded by MC "Gift of Gab" (T.J. Parker) and DJ "Chief Xcel" (Xavier Mosely), the group has worked with a veritable who's who of conscious alternative music. Guests on their 2002 release Blazing Arrow included Zack De La Rocha, Ben Harper, Gil Scott Heron, De La Soul, Karl Denson, DJ Shadow, and Cut Chemist.
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The All Mighty Senators
Compared by various members of the media to Beastie Boys, P-Funk, Fishbone, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Frank Zappa, and Sly & the Family Stone, the All Mighty Senators are Baltimore's gift to the funk. On their recent release Music is Big Business the Senators display prowess with a diverse range of styles including rock, funk, soul, ska, and hip hop. A recent tour opening for the Pretenders garnered them national attention and admiration from none other than Chrissie Hynde herself, who called them "the last of a dying breed, a real rock and roll band."
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Sunday May 4, 2003 [early show] Doors: 9pm
Headliner: Jurassic 5
Support: Scratchmosis
Venue: Howlin' Wolf Nightclub | 828 S. Peters St.| 504.522.WOLF | Ages 18+
Tickets: $30 at or 415.389.TIXX, or at

Jurassic 5
MCs Chali 2na, Zaakir (Soup), Akil and Marc 7 and DJs Cut Chemist and Nu-Mark conjure an energy that recalls a throwback era in hip-hop, when the only thing that seemed to matter was the music and having fun. J5 have always displayed characteristics of those back-in-the-day jams, with its powerful vocal harmonizing and amplified funk beats. But what the group embodies more than stylistic flourishes is that era's spirit: making good music that connects with the people. Formed in 1993, J5 has released two acclaimed albums, including 2002's Power in Numbers. Among the hottest groups on earth, J5, has made a bevy of nationally televised appearances of late, and will be a part of the recently announced Lollapalooza tour.
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Monday May 5, 2003 [latenite SUNDAY MAY 4] Doors: 2am
Headliner: DJ Cut Chemist - official Jurassic 5 afterparty
Support: the Soul Sister, DJ Nappy G (Groove Collective), DJ Motion Potion
Venue: Jimmy's Music Club | 8200 Willow St.| 504.522.WOLF | Ages 18+
Tickets: $15 at or 415.389.TIXX.

DJ Cut Chemist
Cut has been a central figure in the burgeoning turntablism movement, highlighted by his work with Ozomatli and Jurassic 5. Cut's ability to take old records and create new improvisational music makes him simultaneously an innovator and a throwback. His recent "Product Placement" tour with DJ Shadow constructed fresh sound-scapes with ancient 45s, and yet his upcoming Major Label release promises modern dance-hall beats. Cut is a hero to turntablists the world over, and his one J5 after-party appearance promises to be special.

[Published on: 4/8/03]

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