KARL DENSON'S TINY UNIVERSE
Having just completed a tour of Australia and New Zealand as saxophonist in The Rolling Stones, San Diego-based funk-rock icon Karl Denson gets back to it with his band, Tiny Universe, in 2015. On the upcoming shows, KDTU will be joined during the first set by celebrated sacred steel guitarist Roosevelt Collier, best known for his work in The Lee Boys, and during the second set by San Diego-based MCs Vokab Kompany to present “Run DMC Remixed.” Together they’ll reinvent hits from the groundbreaking rappers, including “It’s Tricky,” “My Adidas” and “King of Rock.”
Denson can also be relied upon to dig into his own classic repertoire, as well as, recent stand outs like "My Baby," "Everybody Knows That" and his raucous rendition of The White Stripes "Seven Nation Army." These and more can be found on KDTU's most recent LP, New Ammo, which All Music praised as "easily their most musically adventurist album yet" and PopMatters declared "does a stellar job of capturing the band’s live energy and demonstrating why the band is always a hot ticket on the road.”
Approaching two decades strong, Karl Denson's Tiny Universe is a prolific touring juggernaut that regularly perform over 150 shows a year. An acclaimed reedman and songwriter in his own right, Denson is also one of the founding members of seminal boogaloo revivalists, The Greyboy Allstars. He first came to national attention as a member of Lenny Kravitz's Let Love Rule-era band.
Vokab Kompany are two MC/singers from San Diego, backed by their 4 piece band of awesome. Their live show combines multiple synths/keys with bass/drums and a violin to create a sound that doesn't quite adhere to a specific genre, but seems to fit the bill with several. The band interprets Vk albums (which feature production from a multitude of universally acclaimed producers, such as; members of pop rock sensation Cage the Elephant, DubStep Phenom Stephan Jacobs, Hip Hop legends Hieroglyphics, downtempo legend Random Rab and the list continues across the spectrum of Electronic/pop and hip hop genres. Their new album, VKCE, a collaboration effort with up and coming production/ musician duo Crush Effect (featuring members of Funk/Jamband legend Karl Denson's TIny Universe) on "VKCE" filling a void at the intersection of the hip-hop and EDM worlds. ‘VKCE’ is Hip-hop, it’s electronic, it’s indie - it’s a shout out to the past, and a taste of the future. Vokab Kompany’s Matt Burke describes the experience: “As musicians, it’s an ever evolving world; genres are a thing of the past, so we (VK) were really lucky to have teamed up with producers that pushed the boundaries of our boxes. We got outside our comfort zone, stamped a VK next to CE, and the result was something new entirely.” The brazenly dynamic sound on VKCE has quickly garnered the attention of television and film. The record already has two national commercials, for a major carmaker (debuting 2013) and Southern Comfort. The album debuted at #47 on the iTunes hip-hop charts, behind only major-label releases from T.I. and Chief Keef among all hip-hop records released that week. The team has been blessed with a slew of great press. In addition to a feature on electronic music in the August print edition of SPIN, and "climbing" George Washington Bridge with Al Roker, the band has won best hip-hop group at the San Diego Music Awards for three years in a row, and even impressed Prince Charles when he stopped by Solana Beach's Belly Up to catch a VK show.
Soft-spoken by nature, south Florida-bred Roosevelt Collier does his hollering on the sacred steel guitar. Brought up in the tradition of the House of God Church, Roosevelt built his reputation alongside his uncles and cousins in The Lee Boys, known for their spirited, soul-shaking live performances. Seated front and center, "The Dr." leaves an indelible mark on listeners, flooring audiences with his lightning-fast slide work on the pedal steel. At festivals, he is a regular "Artist at Large," performing alongside many of music's most prestigious acts, from the Allman Brothers, to the Funky Meters, to Los Lobos to the Del McCoury Band. Whether on tour with the Lee Boys, bouncing from stage to stage at festivals, or hosting an allstar get down in Miami, when Roosevelt takes the stage, the ear-to-ear grins can’t help but be contagious.
The Reminders are a rare and remarkable musical duo seamlessly blending soulful sounds and roots music with insightful messages and thoughtful lyrics. The group consists of Brussels-born emcee Big Samir and Queens-born emcee/ vocalist Aja Black, a collective creative force that’s hard to beat. Big Samir weaves intricate rhythmic patterns with a bilingual French/English flow, displaying his street-smart credibility in both his lyrics and cool demeanor. This is beautifully complimented by Aja Black's confident delivery, diverse cadences, and unique vocal stylings. The two have an undeniable magical chemistry as they share more than lyrical abilities and stages; the couple shares a partnership in both music and life as Samir and Aja have been married for almost a decade.
Releasing their debut album 'Recollect' in 2008 and their latest “Born Champions” in 2012, the Reminders have been recognized and applauded for their work internationally through concerts, tours, music awards, TV and radio appearances, and their incredible and dedicated fan base. Having shared the stage with artists such as Les Nubians, Snoop Dogg, Fishbone, Barrington Levy, Nas, Mos Def, Big Boi, KRS-One, Rakim, K'Naan, and others, the Reminders have established a firm place in today's ever-evolving music scene, garnering international acclaim while paving a path all their own. Beyond performances and appearances, the duo is constantly and actively engaged with community organizations, schools, and universities delivering workshops, talks, and specially catered performances.
More than a shade of the same color that we see time and time again, The Reminders transcend the bounds of what is expected. Their stage presence and high energy shows leave crowds in awe the world over, allowing the duo to uplift and entertain all at once. Their unique mashup of razor sharp rhymes; raw, soulful vocals; and reggae-tinged hip hop beats form the perfect backdrop for their relevant and inspiring themes, leaving a lasting impression on listeners with audiences always wanting more. The Reminders take their hip hop foundation and move it beyond genre, time, and space to create a global musical experience that is classic and speaks to all those willing to participate.