Stone Sugar Shakedown
The Stone Sugar Shakedown, a 5-piece Funk, Rock, Jam band from Saint Louis, Missouri, was united by a love of musical exploration, improvisation, & getting soulfully nasty. Among the members is a shared vision of pushing musical boundaries, all while embracing the legacy of Jazz and Jam Bands. Before Fall 2009, when the group formed, each member was actively involved in various musical projects. In the lone year of The Shakedown’s existence, the group has played a great deal of shows and festivals around the Midwest, including Camp Zoe’s Schwagstock 45, and the 10th anniversary Summer Camp Music Festival in Chillicothe, Illinois last May. The recent addition of Keith Vinyard on guitar has only fueled the collective momentum. The Stone Sugar Shakedown has shared the ticket with bands like Dumpstaphunk, Victor Wooten, Cornmeal, Whitewater Ramble, moe., Umphrey’s McGee, Steel Pulse, Bassnectar, Pretty Lights, Yonder Mountain String Band, Papadosio, The Avett Brothers, The Schwag, Melvin Seals & JGB, Todd Day Wait’s Pigpen, and Zappa Plays Zappa.
The group’s sound involves consistent interplay between instruments and the musical chemistry of its members. There is a constant balance of flow and form, structure and spontaneity, stone and sugar. The core consists of Ryan Benthall (bass), Nick Elwood (guitar/vocals), Tracy Gladden (vocals/percussion), Ben Walters (drums), Keith Vinyard (guitar), with other friends providing frequent collaboration. Each show is a unique experience, catered to the atmosphere. Everyone could enjoy The Shakedown’s music. Groove is undeniable. Funk is universal, welcoming people of all ages, genders, types, and backgrounds. Thus, the audience is ever expanding. At the shows, the group wants people to feel free to let their minds wander, and to let themselves become just as much a part of the night and collective vibe as the musicians onstage. Striving for harmony, the band wants its listeners engaged, yet free. Utilizing the capabilities of its members, The Shakedown records and produces the majority of its own music independently, operating out of a one-room, in-house studio. The first full length CD is due out Summer 2011, when The Shakedown plans to hit the road for a Colorado-bound tour. Meanwhile, there is music to play, and a beautiful, inspiring city to embrace. With the wave getting bigger and bigger, there’s no slowing the momentum. Their future looks bright and funky.
Ryan Benthall – Bass
Nick Elwood – Guitar/Vocals
Tracy Gladden – Vocals/Percussion
Keith Vinyard – Guitar