No BS! Brass Band: NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert

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Just southeast of the Virginia Commonwealth University campus in Richmond, Va., lies a compact neighborhood called Oregon Hill. Historically, it's been a (white) working-class part of town, affordable for students and various bohemian types. Recording engineer Lance Koehler was drawn to the place when he moved to Richmond from New Orleans; it's where he eventually found a two-story garage and converted it into his own recording studio and home. It didn't take him long to start doing business across the Richmond music map: Koehler is good at his job, and he's affordable. His business is called Minimum Wage Studios for a reason. He's also a drummer, and though he grew up in Southern California, his time in New Orleans left a deep impression. Inspired by the Crescent City's modern brass bands, in 2006 he started the NO BS! Brass Band with trombonist Reggie Pace. They had a place to fit between 10 and 13 musicians for rehearsal, and they had the means to document their work. And, owing to VCU and its conservatory program — with a history of producing top-notch jazz players — they had plenty of great horn players at their disposal. Funky and danceable, the NO BS! Brass Band takes after the full black-music continuum you hear in groups like Rebirth or the Hot 8. But it's also proggy, and a bit brutalizing, and full of pride in a different Southern outpost. The group's new album is called RVA All Day, after all. And about that jazz cred: In July, it'll release another album called Fight Song, so named because it features the band's arrangements of Charles Mingus compositions. Recently, Koehler, Pace and nine other musicians piled into a bus and journeyed up the freeway to NPR Music's Tiny Desk in Washington, D.C. They blasted us with songs from the new album — it was so loud, you could hear the music on the other side of the building, a floor down. And this summer, when Pace isn't out with Bon Iver's touring band, they'll strike out from Oregon Hill to fly the Richmond flag up and down the East Coast. --PATRICK JARENWATTANANON Set List "RVA All Day" "Run Around" "Infamous" Personnel Lance Koehler, drums Reggie Pace, trombone Bryan Hooten, trombone/vocals John Hulley, trombone Dillard Watt, bass trombone David Hood, alto saxophone Marcus Tenney, trumpet Sam Koff, trumpet Ben Court, trumpet Taylor Barnett, trumpet Stefan Demetriadis, tuba Credits Producer: Patrick Jarenwattananon; Editor: Gabriella Garcia-Pardo; Audio Engineer: Kevin Wait; Videographers: Denise DeBelius, Gabriella Garcia-Pardo

Comments from Youtube

JayDizz92 : anybody else dying to watch the drummer playing.

Joseph Sensor : can't see the drummer but you can sure as heck feel him

Nathan Pleasants : Accidentally wound up here and I am content as hell

Steven Melton : TUBA PLAYER IS A GOD.

Jeremy Taylor : There's a drummer in there... Somewhere...

GuerrillaStyleFilms : They should call themselves the No BS Brass band and a drummer who is totally killin it!!!! next time show some love to your drummer and give him a little camera time. He sounded like he was playing his butt off lol. Great video guys.

Cesar Romero : No BS! Brass Band and Kendrick Lamar collab please.

Ross Marshall : This is what happens when band nerds go to college for music. Awesome.

David Harris : I'm impressed, the drummer & tuba player is putting in work for sure

donaldengine9 : Saxophone... in a Brass band... I'll allow it.


Claw : RVA All day: 0:00 Run around: 4:19 Infamous: 8:40

Nick Weller : Alton Brown on that megaphone there

xeshtaed : These guys are adorably nerdy and totally badass at the same time. I love brass bands.

David Bowman : Gotta love the Low Low Brass :D Being a Tuba, Trombone, and Bass Trombone Player just gotta give them 1,000 props :D

William Schwandt : i bet that tuba player is the most underrated tuba player ever the guy is just SHREDDING it, and i play! his tone is fantastic i want to know what kind of horn that is know what my next purchase will be! keep it up brother!!!!

Ana Epefania Escober : THAT TUBA PLAYER IS SO BOSS.

Lucas Norrington : That tuba is doing work at 7:30

Tyler Campbell : The trombones are killin it!

Matt S : lets play the game "who marched drum corps"

ivo Ezeta : wow! make me feel good! thanks you for your energy and groove! listening in mexico

Allan J. Taylor : I love how on the right the tuba and the 2 trombones are acting really hype, meanwhile the trumpets look they want to be anywhere but there xD

Ian Jeffrey : The trumpet player in purple is my theory professor at VCU! Just thought I'd share haha

Zee Brown : Could've shot the drummer in there 1 time. Sheesh! He gets busy. Shouts to the band. Just stumbled on to this group and video.

Gil Sela : If somebody wanted a book from the back these guys left them no chance

8stringswildoo : Get out your old Tower of Power LP's folks!

Jeff Coghill : If Tower of Power, Chicago and a New Orleans jazz brass ensemble had a love child, it would be this band.  This is some serious jazzy, funky stuff!  Love it

areed264 : Tuba pedals tho!!!!

LodgingOrc : Saxophone alert! Woodwind!

Joel V : Who on earth would thumbs down this??

Bill Goodman : these guys make me want to drink.  That says a lot as 40 something with a mean day job, wife and kid.  Great Stuff....keep owning what you do!

Hugo Guerra Saldivia : If you want to see the drummer, go to "11:00" ;)

Darnell Avery : cowboy bebop at its best lol if they ever make a continuing season

uriahedwardsmusic : No BS! is like the perfect mix of ska, funk, and hip hop.

Panic the Kid : I'm just checking out these guys for the first time. I'm really digging the variety of sounds here. Infectious melodies and earworm qualities aside, these dudes are badass musicians. The brassy, throaty cadences of a high school marching band are the backbone of these songs, but I especically love the heavy spin on it with the drummer's attitude and power, it definitely supports the rest of the ensemble well. I hear a lot of jazz thrown in on the solo sections of these songs. The passages are hectic and make the songs feel even better-structured after the fact. I also really love the megaphone vocals; it also harkens back to that high-school pep rally feeling. The whole thing gives off this wild, urban, robust sound that I didn't know I needed in my life. I hate sounding like a douchey music critic, but damn, I just needed to get those thoughts written down because I've not grown to like such an eclectic group this fast before. A-1 stuff.

skyzefawlun : These guys remind me of Youngblood Brass Band, and that's a wonderful thing! Anyone who digs this and isn't familiar with YBB, check them out, they're legendary.

Guilherme Menezes : MUitooooo Lokoooooooo !!!

pattomuso : Where was Lance.....I can hear him! ;)

Kshitij Dhyani : This is so kickass on so many levels! :D

Kendall Bell : HOLY crap I love those sweet trombone solo's are awesome


holygroove2 : BRASS IN YO' FACE!!! Forget the friggin drummer and deal with the BRASS BAY-BEEE!!

Josh Patterson : I want them to record their songs with more megaphone vocals. It works so well for their sound. I bought the the RVA All Day album anyway cause I wanted to support these dudes. It's on sale $3 off right now

Eg Gnzlz : Diging Tuba bass lines men funky and smoth!

VENTURA Tony : Pooooooowwwwaaaaaaaaaa ! It's amazing ! That's Rock !! §§§

Jason How : OMG.....that trombone player..... i think he started to play that brass before he started talking ^_^

Bette Dillehay : Could I talk you into a return trip to the Mathews Memorial Library for our Soothin' Summer Sounds program?

Riley Preswood : I am a 6th grade middle school baritone player.I just want to say that this group is REALLY good and i hope to be able to play like that one day!I go to Nc East McDowell midle school check us out!

Martin Englander : Awesome groove with these fellas!! Love it