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Friday, November 24, 2017

Mike Dillon Trio @foundersbrewing 11.25

(Photo credit Lisa Boehm)

Of all the music that spoke to a young Mike Dillon--prog rock, jazz vibe greats Milt Jackson and Bobby Hutcherson--punk rock has had the longest lasting, most viable effect on the versatile New Orleans vibraphonist/percussionist. With the amalgamation of his various trios (Mike Dillion’s Go-Go Jungle) coupled up with the showmanship and raw energy of performance, Dillon ventures forth with bold mallet strikes.

“I was into King Crimson, Yes and, of course, Frank Zappa,” Dillon said in an interview with #TMGR. “Zappa’s humor, his compositions, and the ways he crossed musical boundaries spoke volumes to me.”

But when the punk rock of Mike Watt and The Minutemen came around there was no turning back. Here was yet another musical entity that sought to blur and obliviate conventional lines. Similarly, harmonic battling, tons of movement, and plentiful space are features Dillon values in his current trio.

“I tour with bass, drums, and vibes,” Dillon says. “The first thing the sound guy says is ‘Where’s the guitar?’ I point at the vibes and say this is the guitar tonight.”

Dillon feels it important to give his band members—drummer Brendan Bull and bassist Nathan Lambertson—the freedom to do what they do best as long as they don’t get in the way.  

“It’s pretty much free range chicken in my band,” Dillon said with a laugh. “I get people in my band because I like them. I never tell them what to do or not to do unless it’s something musically I don’t agree with.”

Dillon says the old school punk bands that left an impression veered from Steely Dan covers to ‘Tequila.’ What he’s doing now with his vibe-based outfit is the esthetic concept of The Minutemen and a little New Orleans funk.

“Jazz of the 1950s through the mid-1960s and classic punk rock is where I come from,” Dillon said. “I also study world music and pay respect to it, but I like to mix it all up. To me that’s what jazz is all about.”

Roosevelt Collier + Genetics members & Mike Dillon Trio, 9:30 p.m. Saturday @foundersbrewing

FB Event Page:  https://www.facebook.com/events/1417425045041235/

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Grasshoppah at Billy's Lounge Aug 4

Homecoming of Bluegrass jam-band Grasshoppah on Friday: West Michigan favorite reunites for Eastown show with original line up. Guitarist Glenn House moved to Oregon a few years ago, mandolin player Brian Oberlin goes his own way, bassist Chris Carr stays put and gigs with Thirsty Perch Blues Band. They all come together for Grasshoppah 2017 Michigan Tour at Billy’s Lounge August 4. @billyslounge #TMGR @tastemakersgrandrapids @TasteMakersGR