Joe Krown Organ Combo


August 10, 2004

He got the people dancing.

Pretty good for a Tuesday night at d.b.a. The place just doesn't give off the "get down" atmosphere that screams from The Maple Leaf and Tips. Once the room filled up, people were movin' to the super-melodic funk sounds of Crown's combo. Saxophonist Brent Rose, drummer Mike Barras and bassist Bob Sunda accompanied Crown. Usual combo member John Fohl was missed.

It was nice to hear some old-fashioned funk again. Krown wasn't throwing any curves last night. He played simple grooves full of hooks. When Krown mimicked Rose's sax line, it was nice not to have to think of anything besides how good it sounded. The music was elemental, as was the superb drumming of Barras. He used brisk strokes that displayed his agility. He didn't play a superfluous note. Most of the time, the whole band was tight, but they missed cues. Luckily, funk is more soulful than technical, so the mistakes were quickly shrugged off.

Krown did some nasty funk--a fast and loud variation where all the instruments went off at once and the object was to knock the audience members over with the force of it. He also did some slower funk, where the focus was a bad-ass groove that everybody built on.

Krown had problems with his mobile organ all night, so this broke up the show's flow. But, whatcha gonna do? Also, I expected more skill from Krown during his solos. It's easy to sound good on the organ because the sustain of the notes, but maybe Krown was going for the simple and straightforward approach the whole night.

I can't forget to mention the talent of Rose, who makes any band sound better.

So, the Joe Krown Organ Combo didn't turn out outstanding funk, but it was good enough to get the job done. Which was to get people dancing.

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