There isn’t a band in Chicago rising faster than JC Brooks & the Uptown Sound. How else can you explain going from playing an afternoon set at Wicker Park Fest to getting picked to play Lollapalooza the following summer? (in a down year for Chicago artists, no less) These guys are skyrocketing right now, and why not? Their throwback soul-funk sound is a breath of fresh air and Brooks’ stage presence is full of swagger & class. This is one hell of an entertaining band, both sonically and visually. What, you want more evidence that they’re blowing up right now? How does getting all kinds of dap by playing on the news (below) and seemingly coming out of nowhere to snag a headlining show at Metro sound? That oughta do it. Go see these guys if you know what’s good for ya! It’s only $12!
“What does post-punk soul look like? Six and a half feet of raw emotion and sweat, with one leather boot planted in gutsy R&B, the other in taut minimalist grind. Snarling at the crowd beneath an afro pompadour, while indulging in a sly wink, singing to you directly, and here to make you dance. What does post-punk soul look like? It looks like JC Brooks & the Uptown Sound.
JC Brooks was born the son of a Jersey funk diva, his voice erupts with heart and heartache over the ferocious rhythm and star-time charisma of guitarist Billy Bungeroth, drummer Kevin Marks, keyboardist Andy Rosenstein, and bassist Ben Taylor. With a take-no-prisoners live attack and lyrics speaking of the torment and triumph of these tumultuous times, it’s no wonder that the Chicago Tribune called JC Brooks “the real deal”. This is a soul band rallying against our disaffected and disengaged era, connecting with people the old-fashioned way, by whipping them into a frenzy with honest appeal and unbridled enthusiasm.
The Uptown Sound has attracted a true-blue grassroots following, with MOJO Magazine identifying them as “one of the hottest US soul acts”. Since unleashing their Bloodshot Records debut “Want More” (“A lively set of gritty old-school soul and funk injected with raw garage-rock aggression” – KEXP), they’ve barnstormed North America and Europe relentlessly, while burning up NPR and AAA radio with their stomping cover of Wilco’s “I Am Trying To Break Your Heart” (which they performed with the song’s composer, Jeff Tweedy, at Wilco’s Solid Sound Festival).
JC Brooks & the Uptown Sound have toured, warred, scored, and they’re not to be ignored. Bear witness, for these young men are on the move and they know what post-punk soul looks like. It looks like the future.”