One chilly February night back in 2013, I embarked on a life-changing musical experience as the sweet, sweet funky sounds of Kung Fu enchanted my then ninja-funk virgin ears. Thinking back to that concert, it was the first time I saw the band live (aside from a mere snippet of their talent at a Gathering of the Vibes) as they opened for Dopapod at the Highline Ballroom in New York City. Being an avid Dopapod fan and dedicated member of their street team, I was covering the night’s performance for the then young Music Vibes. Accompanied by my cousin, I zig-zagged my way to the front of the stage to snap some photos as the band arrived. Kung Fu began their set with “The Hammer”— an incredible conglomeration of Stoops alien/octopus like key talent and some sexy Somerville saxophone. My cousin and I were immediately hooked- it was as if we were literally bashed on the head with a funky hammer of lethal, high-energy music and our feet were off dancing. I spent the rest of their electrifying and awe-inspiring set trying to steady my camera to get some focused pictures, but the hypnotic music forced me into dance mode and instead of a concert photo album I found myself with a sweat drenched outfit, a pair of satisfied ears and severe muscle fatigue in my legs.
Since then I have followed Kung Fu on tour catching as many east coast performances as possible (be it in New York, Pennsylvania, or even Connecticut). The musicians in this band are, without doubt, some of the most inspirational artists creating/playing music out there today. With Tim Palmieri on guitar, Ryan Tramontano on drums, Todd Stoops on keys, Robert Sommerville on sax and Chris DeAngelis on the bass, this exceptional combination of talent is sure to please. The musicians double in several other bands, including RAQ, Deep Banana Blackout, and The Breakfast, while still managing to come out with juicy funk albums that get your ears twitching and bodies grooving. And their newest release in 2014, Tsar Bomba, is no exception!
Although I can go on for pages writing about Kung Fu, I think it best to simply refer you readers to our most recent interview with the band’s bassist, Chris DeAngelis. The Music Vibes was lucky enough to chat with Chris before the band’s EPIC performances at this year’s New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. Check out the words of the one and only Ninja Hood Rat bassist in “Kung Fu hits New Orleans Jazz (and Funk) and Heritage Fest: Chris DeAngelis Shares the Scoop!”
So all you Music Vibers and funk fanatics out there- this article is to serve as your PSA for Kung Fu’s upcoming performance this Friday, May 15th at the Theatre of Living Arts in our own hometown, Philadelphia. Considering the show’s close proximity to their Jazz Fest dates, it’s safe to say they’ll be bringing an extra special energy and momentum to their TLA and summer shows. The Music Vibes hopes to catch you out there on the dance floor . . . Listen out for two crazy fans screaming, “Stooooooops!” and you will be sure to catch us.
Preview by Rebecca Wolfe
Photography by Rebecca Wolfe
Like The Music Vibes on Facebook
Follow The Music Vibes on Twitter
©2015 The Music Vibes All Rights