By: John Dotson
Connecticut’s local music scene is an eclectic mix of every genre you can think of, and probably quite a few you have never heard of, until now. If you’re looking to hear some great original music you don’t need to head to Boston or NYC, there are plenty of amazing bands right here in Connecticut.
Don’t let their ages fool you; The McLovins know how to jam. Named after the character in the movie Superbad, they burst onto the scene thanks to a YouTube video of live performance of Phish’s You Enjoy Myself. A technically challenging piece for any mature musician, the then 15 year olds pulled it off sounding like seasoned pros. This led to gigs ranging from shows at Hartford’s Black Eyed Sally’s to high profile shows like The Nateva Music Festival in Oxford, ME and The Gathering Of The Vibes Music Festival in Bridgeport, CT. The band has even been featured in Rolling Stone Magazine. Not bad for high school students.
Indie rockers Columbia Fields have been a Connecticut favorite for years. They’ve been voted Best Indie Band for the last three years in The Hartford Advocate. Currently working on their third album, Columbia Fields has graced the stage of almost every major venue in Connecticut. Last year the band won a contest to open for Bon Jovi at Mohegan Sun.
Something of a Connecticut super-group, Kung Fu is an improvisational jazz/funk/fusion/rock band comprised of former members of The Breakfast, Deep Banana Blackout and Jazz Is Dead. The combined talent of this band is something that you need to see to believe. The lightning fast guitar solos of Tim Palmieri mix seamlessly with the bombastic horns and percussion. his is a band that will simultaneously have you dancing and scratching your head.
An alternative hip-hop band, these guys mix elements of rock, funk, metal and hip-hop to create something both artistic and moving. The band’s lyricist Ollie Twist sounds like the love child of Everlast and Zack de la Rocha. Based out of Manchester, CT the group has blown up stages from The Main Pub in Manchester to Sully’s in Hartford.
This blues/rock trio has been playing in Connecticut for well over a decade. They’ve released four albums since 1999 and have played shows all over the Northeast and even in the UK. They’ve shared the stage with big name acts like Steppenwolf, The Black Crowes and The Allman Brothers. Showing no signs of slowing down they’re spending the summer of 2011 playing festivals throughout Connecticut.
John Dotson is a writer, musician and Connecticut native. He currently runs www.ctmamusic.com