Friday, July 15, 2011

Béla Fleck & The Original Flecktones\with The Carolina Chocolate Drops @ Wolf Trap - Filene Center

On Monday, July 10th we say a triple treat at the Wolf Trap: Abigail Washburn & The Village, followed by the Carolina Chocolate Drops followed by  Béla Fleck & The Original Flecktones.  We arrived in time to hear the last few songs from Washburn and were surprised to see Odessa Jorgenson, formerly of Bearfoot, as part of the Village. This was interesting, Chinese songs, played to a fiddle, harp, drums, and guitar. Well not all Chinese, just a couple - but entertaining.

Our main focus was to see Grammy winner Carolina Chocolate Drops who is sporting a new look. Founding member, Justin Robinson, has left the trio and returned to school; but Dom Flemons and Rhiannon Giddens remain. And true to Robinson's words: “Tradition is a guide, not a jailer. We play in an older tradition but we are modern musicians.” - they added two more modern musicians Hubby Jenkins and Adam Matta. Both are from New York City, with Jenkins a multi-instrumentalist similar to Flemons. Matta adds a unique talent - a beatboxer - able to generate all sorts of rhythm. Need a train sound? He's your man. A bass. No problem Just superb. I really liked the new look and sound, inventive yet still honoring the past. Plus how many bands can feature two bones players. The Carolina Chocolate Drops is a must see act. We have another chance at the end of the month at Floydfest. Can't wait soon enough.

As for Bela Fleck and the Flectones, what can you say when the band includes Fleck,  Victor Wooten, Roy "Futureman" Wooten, and Howard Levy. You should see Futureman's new invention - a hand held instrument resembling a guitar the sounds as if he's pounding on the drum kit. And his little brother, a bass icon.And let's not forget Fleck, who has been nominated for a Grammy in more categories than any other musician. Plus, he plays an electric five string banjo. How cool is that.

Photos of the show are available at the MyJoog Facebook page.

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