The legend has been growing. After much talked about performances at JazzFest in New Orleans and appearances in Boston, NYC and various southern states, Garage A Trois finally makes it out to the West Coast and the Rockies at the end of September and into the first days of October. For those not already in the know, this Garage is comprised of Charlie Hunter (8-string guitar and Pandeiro), Skerik (Saxophonist), Stanton Moore (Drums) and Mike Dillon (Percussion and Vibraphone). Yes that makes four guys in a group calling itself a "trois." Hunter explains, "We were originally a trio but we thought Mike was too talented to waste away as an expert translator of ancient Aramaic texts."

When the Good Lord was handing out smart assess he put a little extra junk in this band's trunk. Everything about them is playful, irreverent, imbued with mischief. Eclectic with a capital 'E', their sound straddles downtempo, gamelan funk, swinging '50s cocktail music and even twisty versions of jazz standards by Monk and others. To listen is to hear the joy of men playing together. That's both playing music but also playing around with ideas and noises. As a project that exists outside of their regular gigs (which include Galactic, Critters Buggin', Frog Brigade, amongst a host of others) there's less pressure on them to make a statement.

When asked about playing together, Hunter offers, "We try to maintain as little ear-eye contact as possible. We feel that listening and interacting with one another is a sure way to get us an instantaneous eviction from the hallowed halls of Jambandia." Alrighty then.

The group donned snazzy red and white jogging suits during their early summer tour and tore around the hall before breaking into music. "The jogging suits were the brain-child of Charles Nelson Reilly, whom we consider to be our spiritual advisor and confidant on matters of hygiene and sexuality," states Charlie. Will the jogging suits make a return appearance in the west and can we expect a whole rainbow of colors in their velour sartorial assault?

"We would love to have different colors every night. Perhaps some of the readership would donate?"

Their dynamite debut release, Emphasizer, released in April, would seem to be the backbone for their sets but perhaps not.

"We no longer play any of the music from Emphasizer," says Hunter, tongue nearly bursting through his cheek. "We feel that its message of world peace, tolerance and goodwill have been taken out of context by the liberal news media."

Seriously, Charlie, what's this tour going to sound like?

"The audiences can expect us to be a lot more violent and out-of-control. They are officially warned that anything is possible and we cannot be responsible for our actions."

Fair enough. Those with an appetite for the unusually passionate, giddy diversity and smoking instrumental prowess can cue up promptly. See the boys at the following dates but bring your rain gear and a smile.

September 20 – Stubb's BBQ, Austin, TX
September 22 – Rialto Theatre, Tuscon, AZ (w/The Bad Plus)
September 23 – 4th & B, San Diego, CA (w/The Bad Plus)
September 24 – House of Blues, Hollywood, CA (w/The Bad Plus)
September 25 – Rio Theatre, Santa Cruz, CA (w/The Bad Plus)
September 26 – The Fillmore, San Francisco, CA (w/The Bad Plus)
September 27 – The Crystal Ballroom, Portland, OR (w/The Bad Plus)
September 28 – The Showbox, Seattle, WA (w/The Bad Plus)
September 30 – Wilma Theater, Missoula, MT (w/The Bad Plus)
October 1 – Emerson Theater, Bozeman, MT (w/The Bad Plus)
October 2 – Suede Lounge, Park City, UT (w/Sex Mob)
October 3 – Fox Theatre, Boulder, CO (w/Sex Mob)
October 4 – The Fillmore Auditorium, Denver, CO (supporting Michael Franti and Spearhead)
October 5 – Aggie Theater, Ft. Collins, CO (w/Sex Mob)

Dennis Cook
JamBase | Oakland
Go See Live Music!

[Published on: 9/16/03]

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