Melvin Seals and JGB
Melvin Seals has been a powerful presence in the music industry for over 30 years with a long-established reputation as a performer, recording artist and producer. Melvin is most revered for his powerful, high-spirited, Hammond B-3 organ, and keyboards in the Jerry Garcia Band. Melvin spun his B-3 magic with the Jerry Garcia Band for 18 years and in doing so helped pioneer and define what has now become "Jam Band Music". From blues to funk to rock to jazz, Melvin Seals serves up a tasty mix with a little R&B and gospel thrown in to spice things up.
Melvin and JGB brings an intuitive, expressive style, soul, spontaneity and remarkable chops to the table. With acoustic and electric ingredients and unique combinations of Dave Hebert's guitar and amazing vocals, Jimmy Tebeau's savory bass, Pete Lavezzoli's hearty drums and, of course, a heapin' helpin' of the wizard's magic on Hammond B-3 Organ and keyboards. Along with Shirley Starks and Cheryl Rucker on back-up vocals, the result is a most satisfying blend of natural organic grooves that challenges genre boundaries. Their chemistry is the focus from which they create a spontaneous and high art where the sky is the limit musically. They offer an exciting, often psychedelic musical journey that changes nightly and keeps the audience dancing and smiling (and some staring in amazement) for hours.
Adding his rock-gospel-soul-rhythm and blues touch with his funky style of playing, no wonder Jerry nicknamed him "Master of the Universe". Melvin continues to treat music lovers to his unique brand of melodic flavor with JGB. Come see and hear for yourself!
JGB Band is:
Melvin Seals - Hammond B3 and Leslies, Roland RD700 Keyboard, vocals
Dave Hebert - Gibson SG electric guitar, lead vocals
John Paul McLean - Bass
Pete Lavezzoli - Drums
Shirley Starks and Cheryl Rucker - backing vocals
Joe’s been playing in bands for over 40 years and has played all across the U.S., as well as in Japan, Germany, Switzerland, Great Britain, and Venezuela. Joe’s music over the years has spanned genres from rock’n roll to bluegrass, folk to jazz, country to Motown, and more. From his early days working in an aluminum mill and heavy and highway construction in Central Pennsylvania, Joe developed a keen interest in working class music and has become a well-known performer of songs of work, hope and freedom. Joe’s former rock band, The Bones of Contention, performed with Billy Bragg.
The U-Liners have performed with Lester Chambers of The Chambers Brothers, and Joe has performed with Grammy-winner Dave Alvin, and has also performed with Steve Earle, Tom Morello, Boots Riley, and Jill Sobule. Joe also sat-in at The Nation with the punk band, the Dropkick Murphys. Joe has also performed at the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage. Joe is the President of Labor Heritage Foundation, a labor arts organization, and founder of the new arts and activism project, The CultureWorks Collective.
Avril Smith (of The Uliners)
Avril Smith is an award-winning multi-instrumentalist and vocalist. She started playing guitar at a young age winning local contests in her teens and recording her first album in 2003. She is widely recognized as an accomplished electric and acoustic guitarist and mandolin player.
She has appeared on numerous recordings by D.C. and N.Y.-based artists. Her innovative style and rhythmic drive shines through a spectrum of Americana, folk, roots, bluegrass, traditional and progressive acoustic music. She was invited to join The U-Liners in 2002.
The Washingon Post called Avril’s “hot country licks” a highlight of tribute to Woddy Guthrie. She played with Pete Seeger in 2006. Avril won the Wammie–the Washington Area Music Association’s top honors–for best contemporary folk instrumentalist in 2008 and 2004.
Avril has performed at top venues from the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage (Washington D.C.) and the Birchmere (Alexandria, VA); to the Knitting Factory (New York, NY); Freight & Salvage (Berkely, CA); Rock-n-Roll hall of fame (Cleveland, Ohio), and many more. She plays in a Collings OM-2H acoustic guitar, Paul Reed Smith custom electric guitar and Lawrence Smart F-Style mandolin.
Orginally from New York, she has lived in the Washington, D.C. since 1999 and has worked in the labor movement since 1996.