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So you might have heard about Hobex after their last Tone-Cool record, but you still haven't seen them. Here's a tip: Go See Live Hobex this summer! Hobex is passing on history of Southern soul, and it's an important musical lesson to learn. When you see Hobex, guitarist and vocalist Greg Humphreys will teach you through his own well-written songs what he learned from Stax/Volt, Pops Staples, Curtis Mayfield and James Brown while growing up.

This is not your Johnny-come-lately funk band. Greg Humphreys was in the band Dillon Fence for eight years, had a Mammoth Records deal, but eventually grew tired of playing the same music night in and night out. With Hobex, Greg and Co. are trying to marry songwriting and musicianship. "I'm making the music I want to make... it might sound clich�d, but I believe music perpetuates positive energy."

Hobex's 2002 release, U Ready, Man?, blew me away when I heard it, and on a few levels. Now it wasn't the jammiest record ever, but every song struck a chord with me. Seriously, just about every song was so catchy; you found yourself singing along, bobbing your head, or tapping your feet. The album made it through most of the year in my rotation, and each time I found a new favorite. I asked Greg about working with Tone-Cool, and he said, "I enjoy working with Tone-Cool Records, they're great people. We're lucky to have hooked up with them, they've really helped us get our music out there. They are also putting out some diverse musical stuff by artists like Taj Mahal, North Mississippi Allstars, Susan Tedeschi... and the best part is they let the artists make the record they want to make. I'm glad that U Ready, Man? is on that list."

Hobex doesn't grab you by the shirt they more put their arm around your shoulder. Come on out for a friendly evening with Hobex this summer. They'll be doing this tour as a four piece: guitar, keys, bass, and drums (Booker T and the MGs style). New to the lineup is an excellent B3 player named Russ Betenbaugh, who used to play with a North Carolina band called the Other People. Greg says, "Fans of Hobex with a horn section need not worry, though; April the crew will be back with Russ, Andy, Dustin, and myself for Southeastern tour dates in late July."

Hobex summer tour highlights include:

  • SF's Boom Boom Room for two nights: July 2nd and 3rd
  • High Sierra Music Festival for three days: July 4th, 5th and 6th
  • Opening for Particle in Colorado Springs on July 25th
  • Late-night shows in Boulder and Denver after WP's Red Rocks concerts (June 27th at Boulder Theater; June 26th and 28th at Dulcinea's Hundreth Monkey)
  • Riverfront Jazz and Blues Festival in Omaha, NB on July 12th
  • Bele Chere in Asheville, NC on July 27th
  • Harvest Jazz & Blues Festival in Fredericton, NB on Sept. 12th and 13th
  • Blue Ridge Harvest Festival in Lafayette, GA on Sept. 27th

6.20 | Athens, GA | Athfest
6.21 | Nashville, TN | Windows on the Cumberland
6.23 | Lincoln, NE | Zoo Bar
6.25 | Colorado Springs, CO | 32 Bleu [supporting Particle]
6.26 | Denver, CO | Dulcinea's Hundredth Monkey
6.27 | Boulder CO | Boulder theater [late show, post-Panic]
6.28 | Denver, CO | Dulcinea's Hundredth Monkey [late show, post-Panic]
7.02 | San Francisco, CA | Boom Boom Room
7.03 | San Francisco, CA | Boom Boom Room
7.04 | Quincy, CA | High Sierra Music Festival
7.05 | Quincy, CA | High Sierra Music Festival
7.06 | Quincy, CA | High Sierra Music Festival
7.08 | Crested Butte, CO | Eldo
7.09 | Steamboat Springs, CO | The Tug Boat
7.10 | Steamboat Springs, CO | The Tug Boat
7.12 | Omaha, NE | Riverfront Jazz and Blues Festival
7.18 | Wilmington, NC | Kefi
7.19 | Charlotte, NC | Visulite Theater
7.26 | Greensboro, NC | Blind Tiger
7.27 | Asheville, NC | Bele Chere

Listen to Hobex, see for yourself...

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[Published on 6/20/2003]

U Ready Man?

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