© Ian Stone

Funk in the were given a treat a few years back when from decided to move into our neck of the . Immediately his presence was felt at ALL the right shows that you should be attending, whether he was sitting in a three-piece suit a beautiful woman on his arm taking in the sounds of another band or whether he was on stage shredding his guitar while making sure his facial hair is remaining perfectly coiffed, you couldn’t go anywhere in the area that has “funk” associated it without running into Eddie.

A few weekends back he decided to get fully back together by booking two nights of at ’s Great American Hall for a benefit called The Payback, a way to help out the old neighborhood that he used to in when he was a full-time resident.

the payback

We were stoked to see that was also added to both nights, the super group lead by . For two nights in a row, we were floored with amazing to open the show with these guys delivering some seriously soulful, slow jam funk , always appropriately ramping up to explosions of sound before finding the groove again behind Glaspie’s beats. They ended their two nights with a of “What a Fool Believes” and harmonized their way beautifully through classic. Definitely enjoyed their sets; can’t wait to see them again come , but they’ll definitely be playing a ton ahead of that.

© Ian Stone
© Ian Stone

As for the four sets that came from the between the two days of music, could not have been more thrilled with the performances that were coming from the stage. They had Joe Cohen from the up along with a few others in the horn section who’s names are escaping me right , but they were all there both nights, which really added a lot of fun to the sets. was in the house the first night and joined during the second set for some freestyling and emceeing, which definitely broke up the night and kicked up the energy into something decidedly funky and hip hop-y. For me, the true highlight was on night two when was in the building, complete with a two drum-set attack on stage that got things going earlier than expected. First set of night two, the got to geek out with a legend and play “Cissy Strut”. Afterwards Eddie just looked at the audience and raised a fist and shouted “history!” — clearly a big moment for these guys. At one point Simon got switched out and we were watching The jam with Nikki AND Zigaboo at the same time.

That was mind-blowing bonkers for me as an old hobby drummer myself; watching them shred was easily one of the best musical moments I’ve witnessed all year. And they raised a ton of money, too, so thanks for the party with a purpose! Our friend Ian Stone grabbed some shots from the first night, which you can see below.

Ad Ops Nerd. Living that San Diego life. Chicago born and raised.