(HUDSON, N.Y.) – On Friday night, December 2, 2011, at 9 p.m., Club Helsinki Hudson plays host to two veritable new alt-funk-jazz supergroups: Wicked Knee, featuring Billy Martin, Steven Bernstein, Marcus Rojas, and Curtis Fowlkes, and Mago, a duo project of John Medeski and Billy Martin of superstar jam-funk group Medeski, Martin and Wood.
Billy Martin’s Wicked Knee features Martin on drums, Sex Mob leader Steven Bernstein on trumpet, Curtis Fowlkes on trombone and Marcus Rojas on tuba, playing what they call “RagTimeFunk” with “inappropriate avant-garde interludes to keep everything out of focus.” The musicians in this group have played together in many settings over the decades, including: John Lurie’s Lounge Lizards, Sex Mob, Medeski Martin & Wood, Spanish Fly, the Jazz Passengers, and Get Shorty. The band’s first EP, Wicked Knee, was released May 11, 2011 on Amulet Records.
John Medeski and Billy Martin started their historic musical partnership in 1989 when Martin invited Medeski to come to his Brooklyn loft studio to play duets. This session resulted in the formation of Medeski Martin & Wood in 1991. The two never forgot that initial two-hour jam session;they dreamed of a duet project and eventually Mago was born. The duo recorded their first album together in 2007, simply titled Mago. Medeski uses the Hammond B3 foot pedals as bass accompaniment to their unique, soulful groove explorations. The duo plays hook-laden funk tunes and a few intense exploratory improvisations.
Club Helsinki Hudson
405 Columbia Street