Tag Archives: Lightnin’ Hopkins

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A Couple of Shots to Catch Electro-Swing Pioneer Parov Stellar Live

October 25th, 2017

Marcus Füreder began working as a DJ in Austrian nightclubs in the ’90s, which eventually led to production and publishing work around the turn of the century—before he began releasing downtempo electronic songs under the name Plasma. And while that moniker didn’t stick, the musical path did: Under the name Parov Stelar (above, the video for “Everything of My Heart”), the prolific musician has released a host of singles, EPs and LPs—2007’s Shine (stream it below) earned him the label of “promising producers active in Europe today” from BBC Music—filled with his pioneering electro-swing sound. Stelar’s most recent studio release, The Burning Spider (stream it below), which features jazz and blues artists like Lightnin’ Hopkins and Muddy Waters, came out earlier this year. And now on a North American tour in support of it, Parov Stelar lands in New York City this week for a double dip, tomorrow at PlayStation Theater and on Friday at Terminal 5. South African dance group Goldfish open both nights.

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Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears at Music Hall of Williamsburg

February 21st, 2017

Joe Lewis (guitar and vocals) was working in an Austin, Texas, pawnshop when he first picked up a guitar. He began playing around-town gigs as part of a blues trio, but, inspired by the likes of Lightnin’ Hopkins and Iggy Pop, his interests also included, rock, soul and R&B. So Lewis branched out musically and eventually started playing with different people. Then things clicked: Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears—rounded out by Bill Stevenson (drums), Jason Frey (tenor sax), Derek Phelps (trumpet), Joseph Woullard (baritone sax) and Eduardo Torres (drums)—have a big, full sound, and so even the songs that are straight to the point, like “I’m Broke” or “Big Booty Woman,” will keep you moving. The Honeybears have earned comparisons to Stax Records groups—although keeping it local, they don’t sound too dissimilar from the Dap-Kings—and with his big, shouted vocals, Lewis’s name is mentioned alongside Wilson Pickett’s. After a four-year break, Lewis and Co. (above, performing “PTP” for KEXP FM) returned with their fifth album, Backlash (stream it below), two weeks ago. “There aren’t many acts out there throwing down with this kind of high-energy trashy intensity,” says American Songwriter. “For those unafraid to get the neighbors calling the cops during their next party, Lewis and his growling Honeybears bring the dangerous, hard-charging soul goods to tear the roof off the sucker.” See them do it live, tomorrow night at Music Hall of Williamsburg. Vampire Weekend drummer Chris Tomson’s Dams of the West open the show.