Sugar Free Allstars
Imagine that Deep Purple and Sly and the Family Stone had a love child that grew up in New Orleans listening to Ray Charles, Black Sabbath and Booker T. That love child would be the Sugar Free Allstars. Due to their various musical influences and unusual instrumentation, this funky organ/drum duo is tricky to classify. The music is a unique blend of New Orleans funk, Memphis soul and Hammond organ-drenched gospel all wrapped up in a rock and roll package. Add to the mix a touch of pop songwriting sensibilities and a high-energy live show and you’ve got the Sugar Free Allstars.
Chris Wiser (Hammond B-3, lead vocals, saxophone) and Rob “Dr. Rock” Martin (drums, back-up vocals) make up the dynamic duo of Sugar Free Allstars. As Wiser multi tasks the outfit covering bass lines on the B-3 and cranking out Maceo Parker-style sax solos, Martin lays down a rock-solid beat that keeps the heads bopping and hips shaking. His in-the-pocket style of playing has made him a high demand drummer and aside from his work in Sugar Free Allstars, he is the first call studio drummer for the distinguished Bell Labs in Norman, OK. Wiser’s lyrics are witty (and sometimes goofy), but he is a crowd pleaser and a true entertainer. The connection and fire between the two musicians is obvious. Their onstage energy is tight. Even as a duo, the stage presence is extensive with a good mix of humor. Each and every performance is a one-of-a-kind, rock and roll party.
Sugar Free Allstars have hit the road hard and are expanding their fan base with every show. Calling Oklahoma City home, the band frequents the Central states including the Rocky Mountains. Working into the festival circuit SFA has played the Great Unknown Festival (Fayetteville, Ar), the Wham Bam Thank You Jam (Kansas City, Mo), Dogstock (Melvern, Ks), Log Jam (Isle, Mn), and were personally selected by Little Feat two years in a row to play their Feat Fest in Eureka Springs, Ar. With the release of their first children’s album SFA has expanded their realm of live performances to include kid’s shows at elementary schools and libraries, participating in several Oklahoma and Arkansas library systems' Summer Reading Programs. In addition SFA has been added to the Oklahoma Arts Council's Touring Roster and the Mid-America Arts Alliance's Artist Registry.
The band’s reputation for high-energy live performances has given them the opportunity to collectively share the stage with many diverse acts such as R.L. Burnside, Hank Williams III, Dick Dale, Marcia Ball, G. Love and Special Sauce, Steve Kimock, Bowling for Soup, Paquito D’Rivera, New Orleans Juice, David Garza, Dr. Hook, Bill Watrous, Moonshine Still, Dead Milkmen, Brave Combo, Fred Tackett and Sam Clayton of Little Feat, the Flaming Lips, Dave Mason and Jim Capaldi of Traffic, Rich Matteson, Roger Clyne and The Peacemakers, Speakeasy, Bo Diddley, Soulhat, Cecil “P-nut” Daniels, Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey, the Gamble Brothers, Wes Jeans, Nay Rock (Erykah Baduh’s sister), Dash Rip Rock, All-American Rejects, Dr. John and of course, LA Guns.
The Sugar Free Allstars’ discography includes four studio albums, three of which were recorded in part or whole at Bell Labs in Norman, Oklahoma. Bell Labs studio also claims recordings by the Starlight Mints, Mike Dillon (of Critter’s Buggin’ and Les Claypool’s Frog Brigade) and the Flaming Lips. Music from Sugar Free Allstars’ second and third studio releases, "Dos Machos" and "Return of Dos Machos", has appeared in episodes of PBS’ “Roadtrip Nation” and both albums have spent time on the Jambands.com’s top 30 radio charts. "Return of Dos Machos" also features a guest appearance by Fred Tackett, guitarist for Little Feat. SFA’s most recent release and first kid’s album, Dos Ninos, has received favorable reviews by national children’s music reviewers such as Warren Truitt of the New York Public Library, Stefan Shepherd of “Zooglobble”, and Fred Koch of “Chicago Parent” magazine. The album has also made it into Fids and Kamily’s top 15 “Best Music of 2007 for Kids and Families” awards list. The first song on the disc, “Bathtub Boy”, was in the XMKids’ (XM radio channel 116) top 13 charts for thirteen weeks, peaking at number 1 for two of them. The band’s songs have also been featured on several community, college and internet stations in Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Alabama, Colorado, North Carolina, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Maine, Georgia, Arkansas, Missouri, Wisconsin, Tennessee, Michigan, Oregon, and down under in Australia. Also, Sugar Free Allstars tour 18 of the contiguous States of the Untited States of America and also have toured Italy in the E.U.
Chris Wiser – Hammond B-3/Lead Vocals/Saxophone
Rob “Dr. Rock” Martin – Drums/Vocals