Sharon Jones Leads The 70s Soul Revival To Madison

Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings

On May 16th, Madison will be transported to the golden age of funk and soul. Don’t worry, the early 70s will remain tucked away in the bell-bottom-clad memories of those who lived them. Fortunately, however, the music lives on through the finest purveyors of classic soul in decades, Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings.

They are a singular organism of funk, breathing grooves that many had thought to be long extinct. While they borrow heavily from previous eras, their sound is far from redundant. With aching precision they use the tools and techniques of the masters to mold a classic sound into something all their own. The music press have equally lauded them, with The Boston Globe stating “The band is superb, and Jones … sings of hard times, infidelity, and other life lessons with total authority.”

The group formed in New York, where Sharon Jones, the group’s singer and namesake, worked at Rikers Island as a corrections officer. Originally hailing from Augusta, Georgia, she has more than a little in common with another of that town’s notable former residents, funk progenitor James Brown. Like her predecessor, she can work the stage with a mad fervor and controls a band that can spin on a dime. Her voice, running the gamet from painful soul crooning to bright, snapping funk, plants itself firmly in the realm of the greats.

The Dap-Kings, the house band for Brooklyn-based Daptone Records, harness a ferocious musical power with their buzz-saw saxophones, crisp guitars, rumbling bass, and roaring brass section. Whether you know them or not, it’s likely that they’ve crept onto your musical radar as they are the toast of the recent retro revival, with stints backing Amy Winehouse and Michael Buble. Sharon Jones herself has also lent her vocal prowess to artists including Phish, Lou Reed, David Byrne, and Fatboy Slim.

Whether you are a soul and funk traditionalist who owns every Stax B-side or simply a fan of fun music, Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings offer something for everyone. Look for them at the Capitol Theater on May 16th (tickets here).

-Ross Martin

 Stream Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings’ new album, I Learned The Hard Way, here

4 Responses

  1. Hi All, I just won the tickets to Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings this Monday

    Now if any other readers could help me out with the tickets I already bought, I’m trying to sell a pair here:

    Thanks everyone!

  2. Congrats JP! have a good time

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