The Soul Message Band Takes it to the Road Following the Release of their Critically Acclaimed Debut Album Soulful Days on Delmark

 Performances in Ann Arbor, Cleveland and Worthington OH

“Together, Foreman and Rockingham cook up a delectably greasy rhythmical groove that underpins this entire program and this debut from the Soul Message Band is more a realization than an introduction.” – Elliott Simon (New York City Jazz Record) 

“The Soul Message Band makes me want to have a party. They are full of energy, they groove hard and play soulfully.” – Dee Dee McNeil (Musical Memoirs)

February 2019 saw the release of the Soul Message Band’s debut album Soulful Days on Delmark Records.  On this critically-acclaimed release, which was among the most requested albums of the year on Sirius XM’s Real Jazz radio, esteemed compatriots Chris Foreman (organ) and Greg Rockingham (drums) join guitarist Lee Rothenberg and ace saxophonists Greg Ward and Geof Bradfield for a nine-track masterclass in soulful, organ-led jazz that is infectious, funky, and outright joyous.  On January 31st, SMB in trio format will kick off a leg of performances in the Midwest.

On January 31st, the group will be  at Ann Arbor Michigan’s the Blue Llama Jazz Club.  Tickets for the event start at $10 and the trio will perform two sets, at 7 and 9 PM.  On February 1st, the full group will perform at Ohio’s The Bop Stop at Music Settlement.  The ensemble will perform from 8-11pm and tickets are $20.  The group will then travel to Natalie’s Coal Fired Pizza in Worthington, OH for a 8:00 performance on February 4th.  Tickets range from $10-$15.

The Soul Message Band is anchored by the steadfast team of organ master Chris Foreman and stalwart drummer Greg Rockingham. The chemistry between the two is instantly palpable, honed over the course of twenty-five years in a variety of musical combinations. Most famously, Foreman and Rockingham were two-thirds of the Deep Blue Organ Trio– a true Chicago institution that wowed audiences in jazz clubs and arenas alike for more than two decades.

As described in the Soulful Days liner notes by celebrated writer Michael Jackson, Rockingham was practically “baptized in B3 jazz”. His father Dave was an organist and employed his son’s backbeat at the age of 5 years old. Rockingham continued to hone his skills with Earland, the “Mighty Burner”, with whom he played for over a decade. Bradfield recalls doing a gig with Earland and Lonnie Smith at Chicago’s Green Dolphin Street in 1997: “Great as those two masters were, a highlight was Chris Foreman showing up and bringing the house down…Earland was so excited by the groove Rock and Chris were hitting, he even borrowed my tenor and played a couple choruses!”

January 31, 2020 Blue Llama Jazz Club, Ann Arbor, MI TICKETS/INFO
February 1, 2020 The Bop Stop at Music Settlement, Ohio TICKETS/INFO
February 4, 2020 Natalie’s Coal Fired Pizza Worthington, OH TICKETS/INFO



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