Play that funky music | SummitDaily.com
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Play that funky music

KIMBERLY NICOLETTI

BRECKENRIDGE – It seems if you grow up in Louisiana and have any musical inclination, you can’t help but let it out.At least that’s Danny Rhodes’ experience.Rhodes spent his childhood steeped in Louisiana’s finest music, so it’s no surprise his band, Danny Rhodes and the Messengers, plays funkified rhythm-and-blues these days.

“I got a real good taste of regional soul music from the locals. Mix that with what everyone was hearing in the ’60s and ’70s, and there you kind of have it,” Rhodes said.Rhodes infuses his music with the soul and feeling that would stand out in any genre of music, and his lyrics tend to strike a chord.”The common thread of life experience comes through in the music,” he said. “People can relate to what I relate to. Even if I use twists and literary devices, the heart of it is just the feelings that compel me to write. Sometimes I have a real craftsman approach – I go to work daily and write, but the stuff that really sticks wells out from me inexplicably. It’s the universality of the emotion and spirituality and music.”The Messengers have played nationwide, including the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. They’ve opened for the Neville Brothers, the Radiators and Little Feat, among others.

They’ve compared their sound to a combination of Stevie Ray Vaughn, Little Feat, the Neville Brothers and Dr. John. Though they root themselves in blues and rock, they add a gumbo of funky beats, hook-oriented pop sensibility and a strong southern flavor.Rhodes and bassist Troy Perkins started the band seven years ago. Drummer Ron James and the latest addition, keyboardist Travis Mandrell, round out the quartet.”All the guys are really talented,” Rhodes said. “They’re versatile, which is good because stylistically we cover a broad range. They sing well, and they all seem to be able to relate to what I do really well.”And audiences don’t seem to have a problem relating to the music either.

“People like to dance to our music a lot, and some people like to listen. There’s something for everyone,” Rhodes said. “We have a tendency to grab them with our singing and playing.”The Messengers play a free show tonight at Sherpa & Yeti’s.Kimberly Nicoletti can be reached at (970) 668-3998, ext. 245, or at knicoletti@summitdaily.com.


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