Funk,  Local,  New Orleans

Funk Explosion: Dumpstaphunk at the Rhythm Room

It was about 30 seconds into Dumpstaphunk’s set last night that I realized how starved I was for the Funk. No joke. I literally felt it wash over me like an ocean wave, seep into me, cleanse me, f-u-n-k me. That opening instrumental tune – the rapid fire bass lines of Tony Hall, while he stood over Ivan Neville on the Hammond B3, staring eye to eye – completely locked in from square one. While the chicken scratch guitar of Ivan’s son Ian, and the sounds of the funky drummer, Raymond Weber, piled on in the background. A symphony of funk right from the get-go.

I’m trying to think of the last time I was so funked up. It may have been in the late 90’s in Las Vegas, when Prince took over Club Utopia for one of his aftershows – a funk n’ soul laden jam session that lasted well into the morning hours.

It was a similar feeling last night – watching (and feeling) a talented group of musicians jam and have fun – taking the crowd along with them on a funk-tastic voyage. It was refreshing to pack into the Rhythm Room – a small box shaped club in Phoenix (and my favorite venue in town) – with a diverse group of like minded people. Young, old, black, white – you name it. All there to feel the funk.

From originals like “Meanwhile”, “Put It In The Dumpsta”, and their ode to flatulence on the road, “Gas Man” – to a tight n’ killer viersion of James Brown’s “Super Bad” and the show finale, Sly’s “Thank You Falettinme Be Mice Elf” – the boys of Dumpstaphunk did not let up. They packed it all into a 90 minute plus set. The old saying goes, “Leave ’em wanting more”, and they certainly did that. I wasn’t ready to go.

As I lingered around afterwards, still in a daze from the experience, chatting it up with my Twitter buds @kfoxaz and @johnnyuno, there was Ivan Neville standing right next to us. It was cool to tell Ivan how I was a fan of his and his old man (Aaron $!@ Neville!!). I tell you, I never walk out of that Rhythm Room disappointed. Last night – for the first time in too long – the funk – the Dumpstaphunk – came to the hot Arizona desert. In August. And man, did they quench my thirst.

Dumpstaphunk’s Official Site | MySpace

Be sure to check their tour dates. If you’re on the West Coast, they’ll be coming your way in the next week or two.

Here’s a recent show from Archive.org – Dumpstaphunk at the All Good Music Festival in West Virginia last month. It includes that hella-funky opening jam.

Hey, by the way, ever seen such a cool, tricked out Bug? Saw this in the parking lot last night.

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