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JC Brooks & The Uptown Sound

Dec. 9 • MOTR Pub

By Brian Baker · December 7th, 2011 · Sound Advice
Soul is what happens on both sides of the chicken wire in the roadhouse at the crossroads of passion and abandon. In the equation “heart + emotion + desire,” the answer is “Soul.” You can lose your way, your mind, your edge, your virginity, your baby, your freedom, your stash, your identity, your lovin’ feeling, your religion, your light or your ass, but if you lose your Soul, there’s no compass, map or GPS that can help you find it again. 

JC Brooks sweats Soul, lives and breathes Soul, possesses more Soul in his little finger than the entire Republican party could manufacture for a Detroit photo op in front of the Motown house. JC Brooks and his versatile band, the Uptown Sound, know Soul.

Just as importantly, Brooks and the Uptown Sound fold in healthy chunks of Garage Rock energy, smooth R&B style and frenetic Punk swagger, tapping into the best aspects of their Chicago roots, Detroit’s Rock and Soul heritage and Philly’s towering R&B/Soul tradition. 

After just two albums, 2008’s indie Beat of Our Own Drum and their just-released debut for Bloodshot, Want More, JCBUS has become one of the most in-demand party bands in their native Chicago, opening for everyone from Robert Plant and local legend Buddy Guy to indie sensations like Fitz & the Tantrums, Peter Bjorn & John and Dismemberment Plan.

They even cored a slot on Rahm Emanuel’s inaugural party in May after his successful mayoral run. 

Brooks is also an accomplished actor, taking a role in the Chicago production of Stew’s Tony Award-winning Passing Strange, while the Uptown Sound backed him as the show’s house band. The band also scored a personal invitation to Wilco’s Solid Sound Festival after Jeff Tweedy heard their rave-up version of “I Am Trying to Break Your Heart” and even joined JCBUS and performed the song with them at their rousing Park West show. 

A trip to a JC Brooks and the Uptown Sound show is so spiritually intense that it actually counts as a Sunday church appearance, but you may want to drop in anyway, just to give thanks for one of the greatest new Soul bands on the planet.

JC BROOKS & THE UPTOWN SOUND play MOTR Pub Friday, Dec. 9 with guests BUCKRA. Buy tickets, check out performance times and get venue details here.



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