The former front man for the Black Crows – which he founded with his brother Rich in 1984 – has been on the road with his new group The Chris Robinson Brotherhood for some time now. Onstage the performance has been described as a throwback to the sound of the 1970s, played with an attitude that is very 1990s and whose future in the 2000′s is still to be determined. Robinson they say, has mellowed as have most of us, the rocking guitar riffs and screaming vocals replaced with a more palatable southern blues edge.
The Chris Robinson Brotherhood will be jamming out to their mellow tunes Tuesday, June 26 at 7:30 pm at The Colonial Theatre with openers Sarah Lee and Johnny.
In 2011, after more than 20 years of intense gigging and recording, Chris Robinson set off to shape something new, a fresh rock mythology, a breathing kaleidoscopic thing stuffed with chooglin’ soul, bedrock boogie and shuffling wisdom birthed in intimate clubs and amongst the tall trees of the Golden State and eventually taken nationwide as the Chris Robinson Brotherhood evolved. What began as an experiment without expectations turned into a 118-show journey for Robinson (lead vocals, guitar), Neal Casal (guitar, vocals), Adam MacDougall (keys, vocals), George Sluppick (drums) and Mark Dutton (bass, vocals) that surprised these seasoned pros as music of unshakeable solidity and exuberant reach poured out of them, a New Cosmic California sound with tendrils reaching to the original Fillmore West, Topanga Canyon and outwards towards far horizons.
“This music is unashamedly what we’re into,” says Robinson who cites Neu!, Melanie, Flatt & Scruggs, Mel Tillis and Morton Subotnick as regulars in their van listening.
“It’s not a psych band because you have a Prince Valiant haircut and wear Beatle boots. It’s psych because that’s where our heads are. We want to make music that blossoms. We want to make music that sounds cosmic.”
The jam band boasts mellow, melodically-driven and loose tunes. The brotherhood has created original works such as “Beware,” “If Your Wheel Don’t Roll,” “Rosalee,” “Reflections on a Broken Mirror,” “Star or Stone,” “Tulsa Yesterday,” “Tomorrow Blues,” “Vibration & Light Suite,” and “Star Crossed Lonely Sailor.” However, the band, so appreciative of the great musicians that came before them, also often plays covers of songs originally done by Otis Redding. Their first album, Big Moon Ritual, is scheduled to be released on June 5th, 2012, the same day the band is confirmed to perform the album’s “Rosalee” on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Big Moon Ritual will be followed by companion album The Magic Door in September. A jam band that features not only an incredible lead singer but a great back-up singer in Neal Casal with Muddy and Adam completing the four-part harmonies, The Chris Robinson Brotherhood takes their songs to another level.
Tickets to the Chris Robinson Brotherhood are $25-$60. Tickets may be purchased in person at The Colonial Theatre Ticket Office at 111 South Street Pittsfield, MA 01201 or by calling (413) 997-4444 or online at www.BerkshireTheatreGroup.org. The Ticket Office is open Monday-Friday 10am–5pm, Saturdays 10am–2pm or on any performance day from 10am until intermission.