The Debonaires: A Much- Needed Eclectic Mix of Music
Los Angeles is a city with a wide
musical spectrum and talent base, one
that its occupants often forget. It seems
there is always a number of bands
playing any night of the week in one
of the many landmark clubs and dive
bars that are scattered throughout the
city. This past Saturday was no different
with artists such as Ratatat, Puscifer and
Kaskade playing sets around town.
A lesser-known band, The Debonaires,
originally from nearby Riverside, a
40-minute drive from Santa Monica,
made a trip out to The Mint, a long time
Los Angeles favorite live music club
this past weekend.
The Debonaires were a much-needed
mix of Reggae, Ska, Soul, Funk and
Jazz that served as a good addition to
the eclectic mix of music acts playing
this past weekend.
The Mint, 72 years into business, with
its vintage décor, candle lit tables, leather
stools and booths, is reminiscent of what
it would have felt like to be present in
the days when Miles Davis and Stevie
Wonder graced the small stage.
The intimate set up of the venue allowed for The Debonaires to take hold of the tiny one room nightclub in a matter of two songs.
According to lead singer, Kip, the
band hopped a party bus to the Mint
with friends and fans, driving from
Not surprisingly, throughout their hour on stage, collective screams of "Party bus!" rang from the crowd as people sang along to Kip's voice that could have been found in a local Hawaiian reggae band to the Jazz clubs
of Chicago or Detroit.
According to the band's official Myspace, the band "spawned out of the depths of the recent Reggae and Soul rebirth" and is "an eclectic movement of energy and rebelliousness." Undoubtedly, the band's lead singer's throaty vocals serve as the meat to the mix of guitars, piano, drums and horns that color their sound as a collective
band. Only after speaking to the
restrained, polite man who introduced
himself as the lead singer and saxophone
player, could an observer appreciate the
surprising, get-out-of-your-seat urgency
in his voice that seemed to do just that
to most present.
Opening to a nearly empty dance floor, the floor was nearly full with people dancing to a set list that included originals to cover songs of classics. The Debonaires list artists such as Miles Davis, Otis Redding, Curtis Mayfield, Desmond Dekker, Charlie
Parker, Marvin Gaye, The Upsetters, Steel Pulse, The Meters and Tommy McCook as a few of their major influences.
According to their Myspace, "Out of respect and appreciation for such individuals," The Debonaires" endeavor to produce music of quality and substance, true to its influential origins."
From the relaxing tunes of "See You
Again" to the uplifting "No Dice" filled
with instrumental solos, one thing is
clear, the Debonaires definitely keep
their audience wanting more.
Minutes from the ever present lights and
noise of the Sunset Strip, The Debonaires
rocked Pico Boulevard uncomfortably
hard this past weekend. Their next show will take place on April 11, 2009 at 5 p.m. in Downtown Riverside at Street Jam. More
information on the band and upcoming
shows can be found at www.myspace.com/thedebonaires.