Santa Cruz Good Times

Tuesday
Jan 27th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

A Taste of Richmond

blog_Congress1Young guns, The Congress, refine a classic southern sound
When you think of the word Congress, what often comes to mind, is a collection of politicians meeting a few times a year to pass legislation that no one can agree upon. Instead, imagine a group of musicians, each influenced by their own political agendas, but agreeing on one thing all the time: rock ‘n’ roll. Meet The Congress, a fresh foursome from Denver, Colo. with a southern twang.

In the early days, the guitar duo—formed by long-time friends Scott Lane and vocalist Jonathan Meadows of Richmond, Va.—were "running an open mic and writing together. And that's kinda how it all started,” remembers Lane. Eventually they got into the studios, "took the tunes we had written and the people that were around us at the time, and just had fun with it."

The Congress reflects Richmond's heavy soul, jazz, and blues scene, 100 percent. "When you've been around that sound growing up, playing music later in life, you can't help bringing that into what you're doing," says Lane.  But, he admits, "really what we are at heart is a rock and roll band. You could just name blog_Congresswhatever from the ’60s and ’70s—as long as it's a rock and roll band—and we're probably heavily influenced by them."

 

Led Zeppelin had a strong delta blues feel, Pink Floyd had its gospel soul choruses, but neither grew up in the diverse music culture of Richmond. The Congress lucked out—now they can dedicate all their time to refining that sound. Their signature, based on Meadows’ angelic voice and the wailing moans of Lane's guitar solos, lets all their influences and personal expressions run together.

Their unique mash-up is drifting across the nation, now that the band is playing festivals and blowing up in popularity. But Lane fondly remembers the band’s humble open mic beginnings. "Especially when we play in a town where we've never played before—and haven't developed a huge following—it’s great  to play in a smaller atmosphere where it feels more intimate. It’s just a better time for everybody."

The guys are excited to "keep in touch with that [intimate setting],” this week at Moe’s Alley. Without the chaos and the physical separation between the band and the audience often experienced festivals, the quaint Santa Cruz venue will allow attendees to practically join the rockers on stage. And hopefully, make the band feel right at home.

 


INFO: 8:30 p.m., Wed., June 29. Moe's Alley, 1535 Commercial Way, Santa Cruz. $5/adv, $8/door. 479-1854. Photo credit: Robert S. Mann.

 

Comments (1)Add Comment
Great Article
written by Tom Perrault, June 27, 2011
Glad I caught this article. I havn't heard of these guys, but am looking forward to checking them out. thanks for taking the time to share!

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Force of Nature

Santa Cruz’s Carlie Statsky brings her love of the natural world to the hyper-personal art of wedding photography

 

Mercury Retrograde in Aquarius

The magical time of Mercury’s retrograde cycle is here once again, until Feb. 11, and then some. The Mercury retro cycle actually lasts eight weeks when we consider its retrograde shadow, giving us six months a year for review. We know the rules of Mercury retro: Be careful with everything; cars, driving, money, resources, friends, friendships, groups, interactions, thinking, talking, communications. Avoid big purchases, important meetings and important repairs. Mercury retrograde times are for review, reassessment and rest. Our minds are overloaded from the last Mercury retro. Our minds need to assess what we’ve done since October—eliminating what is not needed, keeping what’s important, preparing for new information in the next three months (till mid-May). Mercury in Aquarius retrograde … we reinvent ourselves, seek the unusual, we don’t hide, we’re just careful. We live in two worlds; outer appearances and inner reckonings, with both sides of our brain activated. Yet, like the light of the Gemini twins, one light waxes (inner world), the other (outer realities) wanes. Like Virgo, we see what’s been overlooked—assessing, ordering and organizing information. It’s an entirely inner process. When speaking we may utter only half of the sentence. We’re in the underworld, closer to Spirit, eyes unseeing, senses alerted, re-doing things over and over till we sometimes collapse. Because we’re in other realms, we’re wobbly, make mistakes, and don’t really know what we want. It’s not a time for decisions. Not yet. It’s a time of review. And completing things. Mercury retro: integration, slowing down, resolution, rapprochement.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of January 23

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Bye Bye Benten!

Benten closing, plus Award-winning gin, a massive burrito and chocolate review

 

Trout Gulch Vineyards

Scanning the shelves of Deluxe Foods of Aptos, which carries an impressive selection of local and imported wines, I picked up a bottle of Trout Gulch Vineyards Chardonnay 2012, described as “a local favorite” by the busy market.

 

Cremer House

What’s old is cutting-edge again in Felton

 

How are you going to make a tangible difference in your community this year?

Spread more kindness and compassion.