2009 has been a busy year for Soulive. The New York-based funk-powerhouse trio formed its own record label, Royal Family Records, released it's latest studio endeavor, UP HERE, which has been available as a download and will now be available on CD with a bonus live DVD July 7. The band has toured nationally this past Spring, launched their own festival, the Royal Family Get Down, and will hit the road again this Fall.
The physical release of UP HERE includes a bonus DVD of footage filmed live at the Blue Note in Tokyo in Summer 2008. UP HERE is the debut release on Royal Family Records. The album was recorded in Soulive drummer Alan Evan's Play on Brother Studio in Hatfield, MA in Fall 2008. "This is the Soulive album I've always wanted to record - I've been hearing it in my head for years," says Evans, who also tracked and mixed the record.
The record's opening track "Upright" immediately sets the tone with an undeniable groove featuring Neal Evans on an old upright piano. The band then offers up a few nods to the old-school: "For Granted" is a tip of the hat to Grant Green, featuring guitarist Eric Krasno's licks reminiscent of classic early solos on Get Down and Turn it Out. Guest vocalist Nigel Hall tears it up on the retro-soul number "Too Much," and Krasno makes his guitar sing like D'Angelo on the laid-back grind of "Put On Yo Pajamas." The entire record features tight horn arrangements from long-time Soulive collaborators and friends, Sam Kininger and Ryan Zoidis.
Soulive's fall tour begins on September 12 at their own festival, The Royal Family Get Down. The line up features Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, Charlie Hunter Trio, Nigel Hall and Soulive's own headlining set with special guest John Scofield. Soulive then heads west for a run of dates anchored by stops at the Monterey Jazz Festival and four nights at Yoshi's in Oakland and San Francisco. The fall tour will then head back east for a series of Northeast dates including the Bowery Ballroom in NYC and Burlington's Higher Ground.
July 31 - Celebrate Brooklyn, Brooklyn, NY
Aug 6 - Sunset Concerts Festival - Washington DC *w/ Derek Trucks Band
Aug 7 - Innsbrook Pavilion - Glen Allen, VA
Aug 8 - The Jewish Mother, Virginia Beach, VA
Sept 12 - Royal Family Get Down - Northampton, MA
Sept 17 - The El Rey Theater - Los Angeles, CA
Sept 18 - The Hopmonk Tavern - Sebastapol, CA
Sept 19 - Monterey Jazz Festival - Monterey, CA
Sept 22 - Yoshi's - Oakland, CA
Sept 23 - Yoshi's - Oakland, CA
Sept 24 - Yoshi's - San Francisco, CA
Sept 25 - Yoshi's - San Francisco, CA
Sept 26 - Puerto Vallarta Jazz Festival, Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
Oct 14 - The Note - Westchester, PA
Oct 15 - The Bowery Ballroom - New York, NY
Oct 16 - The Westcott Theater - Syracuse, NY
Oct 17 - Higher Ground - Burlington, VT
Oct 22 - Water Street Music Hall - Rochester, NY
Oct 23 - Revolution Hall - Troy, NY
Oct 24 - The Port City Music Hall - Portland, ME