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Rock Candy Funk Party - Tales from New York, Live at the Iridium | FESTIVALPHOTO

Rock Candy Funk Party - Tales from New York, Live at the Iridium



Rock Candy Funk Party is a band who is probably an unfamiliar name to most people, although most people will know at least one of the names involved. The group consists of Tad Bergman (Drums), Ron DeJesus (Guitar), Joe Bonamassa (Guitar), Renato Neto (Keyboards), Mike Merritt (Bass) and Daniel Sadownick (Percussion).

Tal Bergman is a producer and drummer who has played drums for artists including Herb Alpert, Belinda Carlisle and Peter Certera, and has worked with bands including Simple Minds, Billy Idol, Rod Stewart, LL Cool J and many more.
Joe Bonamassa barely needs an introduction - the Blues guitarist is well known for his solo Blues work, his work with Black Country Communion, and his work with Beth Hart.
Ron DeJesus is a funk guitarist from Los Angeles that has worked with Tito Puente, and Hugh Masekela
Renato Neto is a Brazilian keyboard player who toured his Jazz band extensively before moving on to work with artists including Prince.
Mike Merritt has been a member of the house band on Conan O'Brien's TV show and has performed with artists including Chuck Berry, Bruce Springsteen, and Stevie Ray Vaughan.

So that's who is involved, but what exactly is Rock Candy Funk Party? Well they're a band who play instrumental 70's Jazz-Funk. Although they are technically a band and have released an album (last year's "We want groove"), rather than being a traditional band they seem more like a group of friends who get together when their schedules permit to play music for fun, and watching the documentary you keep hearing the same thing - they're doing this for the love of the music and the pleasure they get doing it. They're also a "Improv" band, so when they did the live shows that were filmed and recorded for this release, the show was never quite the same twice as they constantly change the songs as the mood takes them as well as changing the running order.

Funk certainly isnt a fashionable or best-selling genre, and it's not one I've listened to much, but it's always good to listen to something different and this is actually great fun to listen to. I have to say that listening to the music, the standard of the musicianship is simply superb, and as you watch them play you see how effortlessly they interact with each other, and for music that is improvised there's no sign of it as they're all so good at adapting, so it's not clear from watching or listening which bits are them playing the song as recorded and which are the bits they're making up as they go. There's no sign of ego's either - as an example, Joe Bonamassa is tucked away at the back of the stage quite content to just be there playing and with no visible desire to be the centre of attention.

It's a nice package. You get the DVD of the concert which also includes a 25 minute documentary, and also get the concert on 2 CDs. It all comes in nice double gatefold package that's nearer the size of a Blu-Ray package than a CD case.

This isnt an album I'd normally have thought to listen to, but I'm very glad I have listened to it and watched the DVD as it really is excellent musically with a real 70's vibe to it.

Track listing:

1. Octopus-e
2. Work
3. We want groove
4. Heartbeat
5. New York Song
6. Spaztastic
7. Ode to Gee
8. Dope on a rope
9. Best ten minutes of your life
10. Steppin' in it
11. Mr Clean
12. One phone call

Skribent: Anthony May
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