Posted 10 hours ago
Norway’s retro-soul jazz-infused pop wonder Bernhoft hits Minneapolis tomorrow night and it’s going to be a doozy. This guy puts on a fantastic one-man live show; beat-boxing master meets looping sorcerer meets incredibly versatile vocals (he performed in the Norwegian Opera as a kid, so there’s that). In less complicated words, it’s really good pop funk with a lot of heart.
Bernhoft released his (super rad) sophomore album Solidarity Breaks in 2011, and then won the Best Artist and Best Male Artist of the Year awards at the 2012 Spellemannprisen. He’s funky, He’s brilliant, and it’s going to be really hard for the Dakota to stay seated during this set. Tell all your friends—Tuesdays don’t have to be dull.
Tuesday, June 18 2013
7p // $20 // All Ages
Dakota Jazz Club
Posted 12 hours ago
What a guy.
Posted 5 days ago
The always-extraordinary Field Report returns to Minneapolis this weekend! In all fairness, the Milwaukee-based outfit was just here last weekend supporting Richard Thompson at the MN Zoo, but on Saturday they’ll return to the intimate designs of the Dakota Jazz Club supporting Josh Rouse. It’s going to be stellar.
MFR first spoke with lead man Chris Porterfield last November as they approached their first headlining show in Minnesota. We took this weekend as an opportunity to follow up and see how things have changed a near-year and hundreds of shows/festivals later. Porterfield was as pleasant and inspiring as he always is; this time talking about experimenting with the live shows, looking ahead to a new album, and remembering the time he saw Paul Westerberg play Pantages Theatre.
You can catch Field Report and Josh Rouse in a doubleheader this Saturday at the Dakota Jazz Club.
You’ve had a great spin around the block since the album has been released. You’ve done a lot of headlining and you’ve done a lot of support. Is any of this getting easier as you go or do you still feel nervous when you hit the road?
I think we’ve learned a lot. We’re always learning. Especially in support slots; it’s great to learn from [others] and get a different thing every night, a different group of people. The way we approach it—it’s us, it’s the people that came to the show, and we all do it together. It’s a little bit different every night; depending on who is there and if they know us, etc. It’s different, but it’s always fun.
Getting to make connections and build relationships with people is great.
You’ve played many types of venues—festivals, theaters, dingy bars, you just played at the zoo, and you’re coming to the Dakota. Do you think there is a type of venue or crowd that you and the band feed off of best?
The stuff that we make works best in listening environments. That’s not to say it’s not fun to explore too. It’s different energy. The Dakota will definitely be a perfect place for us. I’m really excited about that show.
I’ve seen you a good handful of times and they’ve all been in different settings. Every time I see you I feel like the band is even tighter than before and the chemistry is that much more amazing.
There is really no substitute for just getting out and playing a lot. We know what we’re capable of doing and the intentionality has grown. It’s less passive.
Are you performing with a lot of new material yet?
Yeah, we’ve tried out a few new songs on the road. This time off that were in right now is for writing a bunch of new stuff. So yeah, depending on how any given night feels I hope to be doing at least half of the set as new stuff. It all depends though, it’s not a static show. It’s usually sort of a last minute choice; what feels right tonight. Being in the room for a couple hours, soaking up the vibe, reacting to the day, and the crowd—it depends. We’ll definitely have some new to deliver.
Do you write a lot on the road or is that saved for home time?
I write a lot of lyrics on the road and then—typically my process lately has been filling up notebooks on the road and then when I get home I decompress and go through everything and see what things are talking together as a piece. Then I’ll put them together and demo stuff or bring stuff to rehearsal and we’ll figure it out. I typically don’t write music on the road.
We’ve had some line up changes, so it’s a little leaner, a little more muscular, on this tour. We’re going to be a 4-piece and we’re experimenting with other approaches performance-wise that we haven’t done before. Some sample things, some tribute things, it’s going to be less…er, funky, I guess. To me that has sort of been the trajectory of this thing. We made a record that was sort of down-tempo and acoustic-y and that was kind of our opening salvo and then from there it got to be a little more muscular in the live interpretation of some of those songs. I think that trajectory is continuing.
Is the new line up the group you played with at SXSW?
It’s those guys minus two. Our guitar player and keyboard player have had to step down based on the realities of real life, but the other four of us still have our heads in the clouds.
Switching gears—does the band still have a number that fans can text questions to?
(laughs) We’ve actually taken that down. It’s still active, and some that have sent messages in the past still have the number, so I will sometimes get messages from people all over the place.
Did that prove fruitful? I love it when bands do as much direct-to-fan as possible so I was curious how it worked out for those relationships.
It was definitely cool. We’d be on the road and then someone would come across a song and then share their experience of the first time hearing the song. It’s cool when you’re in a small town, small bars, etc. We met people that way that would come to shows; we made real life connections. Which is the goal right? Then things kind of died down with it so I think it came down off the site.
What do we know about a new album? I have to ask.
We are going to spend most of the summer touring and writing. We’ve got studio time booked in September. In a perfect world we would have a record in the can by the end of this year for an early next year release. But, there are a hell of a lot of variables (laughs), between now and then. That’s the general plan.
Do you have a favorite Minneapolis venue? One that you have played in your lifetime?
I do love the Turf Club a lot. I love the people there, I love going there. Now, I’ve heard it through the grapevine but I’ve heard that the 400 Bar isn’t what it was before. Is that true?
It’s gone now!
Yeah. I couldn’t believe it. I had heard that it was going to change ownership, names, whatever. But yeah, it no longer exists.
This may or may not differ from your last answer, but do you have a favorite Minnesota venue to attend a show?
It’s tough to beat First Avenue. But, man, yeah it’s hard to beat First Avenue. Though I’ll never forget, I saw [Paul] Westerberg at Pantages Theatre, and that place was awesome. I think it’s the only show I’ve ever seen there but I was blown away by that room and the vibe of that evening. That will always be a special place for me.
Interview by Laura Yurich
Josh Rouse w/Field Report
Saturday, June 15 2013
8 & 10p (2 shows) // $22
Dakota Jazz Club
Posted 6 days ago