Music: Ketchy Shuby

What does a predominantly Latino member band (plus one Southern boy), all under the age of 30, know about the depths of soul music? Next Thursday, August 30th, you must get yourself in front of Ketchy Shuby at The Black Bird Ordinary, to find out for yourself. While most of their peers are munching on pop and techno mixes, this seven member band is channeling the deeply rooted soul and energy of the likes of James Brown, Ray Charles, The Beatles, Hendrix, Lil Richard and Al Green, conjuring up their own rendition of a blend of traditional soul, and rock, with a dab of a reggae, and a touch of surf-guitar, creating some of the most exciting soul-groove-based tunes in Miami today.

The band takes their name KETCHY SHUBY from a song title on Peter Tosh’s groundbreaking album, Legalize It, in which Tosh refers to a Cricket term (European bat/ball game), albeit in the context of sexual double entendre.

Whether opening for New Orleans’ own Glen Douglas Andrews facing a large, lively crowd or taking stage midweek for a handful of late nighters, this group consistently gives 150%. Upon first glance, these musicians don’t have the typical, “I wanna be a rockstar” persona, therefore, when they turn it on, one can only be enormously surprised by the sounds they emit. It is simply impossible to stand still in their presence.

This Miami band, known for their live, soul-drenched ensemble of music, lead by frontman Jason Hernandez-Rodriguez with his electrifying lead vocals as well as lead guitar, has the energy and musical range that allows them to change melodic moods on a beat from a Motown pulse to chill-out blues rhythm to an afrobeat jam session without losing the attention of a single dance floor hipster. Filling out the big sounds are Chip Gardner (keybords), Matthew Pyatt (bass), Andres Sanchez (drums), Robert Smiley (sax/flute) and Karim Milan-Mota, (tamborine) also as shadow-frontman extraordinaire, who sometimes takes the spotlight with lead vocals and dance-o-matic, mixing it up with the audience and band alike. As with any band, there are often comings and goings, however, this line up has been collaborating, on and off stage, for a solid three years. And with seven members, day jobs, and creative methods, amazingly, this band is as tight as they come.

With the diversified influences of Stevie Wonder, Al Green, Otis Redding, Budos, MJ, and a multitude Fania’s label Latin artists, Ketchy Shuby has been prolific in producing their own sounds in the past two years. In 2011, they pumped out song after song beginning in January with the release of their first reggae inspired album, NOTIMETOHATE, followed by the release of their soul-laden EP, The Energy, March 2011. These albums helped to lay the groundwork leading up to their critically acclaimed full length album, Tiny Vices, which has been receiving heavy airplay on college radio in Miami, creating a young, enthusiastic following opening up the chance to perform extensively around South Florida.

In 2012, the band released “Downtown Soul Record Singles Club” with soulful renditions of Nirvana, The Rolling Stones, and Frank Ocean, among others. They also just recorded and put out a digital 45′, which included a video laced with dark humor of “Long Live The King”, exclusively for Record Store Day. The band will be releasing a full, new album this fall.

Can’t tell you how funky-fantastic it is to experience this band in Miami’s local and intimate venues…who knows for how long before they move on to bigger opportunities? For more dates and places to catch them go here:

About Vala Kodish

Speak Your Mind