This years Friday night lineup (tomorrow night, May 4th) on the downtown Market Street Festival Main Stage promises to be one of the best ever. Between Mingo Fishtrap and Lukas Nelson and Promise Of The Real, the two bands will offer up music that will cover several different types of musical genre. Mingo will kick things off at 7:30 p.m. with Nelson hitting the stage at 9:30. $10 will be the cost to get in and tickets can be purchased at the gates if you don’t already have one. You can bring chairs if you like, but with Mingo Fishtrap and POTR (Promise Of The Real), you likely won’t be in them long. They’ll funk up the place!
With a sound dancing between gutbucket soul, N’awlins grit-down funk and horn fueled Motown pop, Mingo Fishtrap is an anomaly in the contemporary music scene. With each album, the group gravitates closer to the classic sounds that inspired them to learn their craft. What’s old is new again; with young audiences flocking to see a live show that lays its musical roots more in 1967 than 2012.
And that’s just fine with bandleader Roger Blevins, Jr.
“Blues, soul and R&B is the common denominator of pop music. People around the world know that sound- Chess, Stax, Motown, Muscle Shoals – as part of the soundtrack to their lives. I grew up listening to Pops (Blevins’ father and Mingo’s bassist, Roger, Sr.) play those tunes to every age, race, color and creed. And from what we see, at least, people still need it.”
Mingo Fishtrap traces its beginnings to the mid 90s when Blevins and another five of the group’s eight members were attending the University of North Texas’ Jazz Studies program. Originally derived as a loose, after-class jam, Mingo covered songs from Otis Redding, Tower of Power, the Neville Brothers and other soul and funk masters with no particular professional ambition.
“Obviously, there wasn’t a lot of classic soul being played around campus,” says Blevins. “People around the dorms just took to it and the ball started rolling. We were good friends playing music we loved; that’s a good recipe.”
And it’s that same delicious soul food that Mingo cooks up today. With an inspired, high-energy live show, they engage the audience – persuade them to, sometimes literally, join the band inside the music. With a new 11 song EP, In The Meantime, featuring music from a recent show in Austin, TX as well as some new studio tracks, adding to their catalog of CD releases, Mingo captures a musical conversation, which speaks with reverence about the past and with hope about the future.
Through their time together on the road, Mingo Fishtrap has performed on bills with a wide range of artists: Sting, Blues Traveler, Ozomatli, Galactic, Delbert McClinton, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Little Feat, George Clinton & P-Funk, MOFRO and Jonny Lang among others.
With Lukas Nelson and Promise Of The Real, blues/rock will be the name of their tune, though they bill themselves as an American Rock-n-Roll band. Nelson (yes, Willie’s son) and the band just released a new CD on April 3rd entitled ‘Wasted’. Just because he’s the son of Willie, don’t expect the twang of country music to be broadcasting from the P.A. speakers Friday night. Nelson, 23, is a blues/rocker and he and his band will set that record straight right out of the gate.0