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Friday, 07 March 2014 12:00

Keller Williams 3/7/14 + Video

C. Taylor Crothers C. Taylor Crothers
Written by Wil Wander
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About this Media...

  • Date Recorded: March 7, 2014
  • Artist / Band: Keller Williams
  • Hosting Show: Higher Ground
  • Sound: Dan Kinney
  • Video: Ed Kleinberg

Keller Williams has characterized the life of the constant touring musician for more than two decades, persistently evolving and redefining his style, methods and accompaniment while reimagining his own work and others' each step of the way.

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Starting from acoustic songwriter performances in the dark corners of dusty pubs, Williams quickly gained attention and became a staple of the summer festival scene. As a solo artist, he's an extremely versatile multi-instrumentalist, including beat boxing and one of the finest mouth-trumpets to step to the microphone, all combined in a live loop onstage. Beyond his solo performances, he's collaborated with a number of backing bands, highlighted early on by the Keller Williams Incident, joining the acclaimed String Cheese Incident for an album and a number of tours. Building on that experience, he embraced the sounds of bluegrass and Americana, perhaps most evident in Keller and the Keels, continuing on to the acoustic funk style supported by More Than a Little.

Joined by More Than a Little members, Tanya Lizembe Jackson on vocals, and Gerard Johnson on the piano, Williams brought a taste of his newest release, simply titled "Funk," to the Larry J. Weir Center for Independent Media. The trio shared two original pieces and a distinctive cover of the Talking Heads, an act Williams covers and interpolates often in his performances. Even after shedding the deeper backing of the full band or Williams' personal arsenal of toys, they achieve a comprehensive groove with layers of harmonies and the distinctive rhythm of the funk style.

All photos by Corey Woodruff.

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