Thursday, June 5, 2008

Kevin Sandbloom at Elevated tonight!

Last night, Rudy and I went to LionLike MindState. We ran into Kevin Sandbloom and to make a long story short, he'll be coming through to Elevated tonight. This will be his 3rd visit and so far, every appearance has been memorable. Last time, his smooth melodies made some of the ladies holler! Listening to Sandbloom is a journey through real music and soul.

Kevin Sandbloom is a man who has one thing on his mind. Playing music. He has been doing it ever since he picked up a guitar at 16 and simultaneously fell in love with the music of Bob Marley. "All my songs sounded a little like a Marley rip-off" he says of his early pieces. They also happened to be crowd rockers, as the first band he fronted in high school, BUMP, became a local staple in his hometown Pasadena, CA. He cut his musical teeth on influences like B.B. King, Stevie Wonder, The Beatles, Steely Dan, Prince and Sade. Of the creative culture he came up in he says, "The whole thing was to do like Bill Withers mixed with The Beatles or Parlamient meets Elvis Costello or Pink Floyd meets Steel Pulse so we were trying to mash it up from early on". It was this eclectic atmosphere that shaped his musical path as well as a local songwriter, Peter Galvin who was in a legendary band, The Bedshredders. "He showed me first hand what was possible with songs. His stuff was so advanced though he was only a few years older, my songs sounded juvenile next to his".

    Fast forward to the present and Kevin's music can hardly be called childish. He is regarded in songwriter circles as an artist who operates at them top of his game. He has performed on stages from the Nuyorican Poets cafe in New York, to B.B. King's Blues Club in Los Angeles and is a fixture at music and poetry venues across the U.S. For the last five years he has been producing music at a furious pace. 4 full-length albums and an Ep under his belt, he is currently touring and promoting his latest effort, the acoustically driven "Mad Love Activate". The record documents some of the songs he has been working on over the last year and also features percussion and backing vocals by Melany Bell. Though no longer performing together, the two were touring partners for the past few years. "People were always asking for a recording that was just the two of us, and I think it turned out pretty good. The arrangements were something we developed together and I'm happy we were able to document that sound."

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