Tour update and gratitude

Taking an independent band on tour is an inherently difficult thing to do. So whenever people in the various cities we travel through and play in extend generosity, hospitality, friendliness, and unbelievable amounts of help with smiles on their faces, it makes me tear up with joy. Thousands of thanks to our friends in Dallas, Austin, and New Orleans for three amazing shows and amazing hangs, for your generosity, warmth, and support. We’ve already been having a huge, if sleep-deprived, blast, and tonight we keep on going at the Thirsty Hippo in Hattiesburg. Much love to everyone involved!

Progger and Funky Knuckles are at the Hippo tonight, and then in Atlanta tomorrow at 529 with the fantastic Indie Revenge. ChoomDiddlyWonka.

Final tour dates! Starting JULY 28, going through AUGUST 7

After going out and hearing our dude Cory Henry rip shop last night at Rockwood, we’re extra excited to get out there and bring our own brand of choomdiddlywonka to the South and Northeast. This tour done gone and got finalized! Check out these dates, and click the links for advance tickets and venue info:

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Progger and Welcher/Urvalek

July 17: Albany, NY (Red Square)

Progger and the Funky Knuckles

July 28: Dallas, TX (the Free Man)

July 29: Austin, TX (One2One)

July 30: New Orleans, LA (Blue Nile)

July 31: Hattiesburg, MS (the Thirsty Hippo)

Progger, the Funky Knuckles, and the Indie Revenge

August 1: Atlanta, GA (529)

August 2: Asheville, NC (the One Stop)

August 3: Athens, GA (Hendershot’s)

August 5: Raleigh, NC (Pour House Music Hall)

August 6: New York, NY (Rockwood Music Hall)

August 7: Philadelphia, PA (the Grape Room)

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If you’re in or near any of these fine cities, please come check out new music by all these bands, hang out, say hi, and get some phauwnk in your life. More info on the other awesome groups:

http://www.thefunkyknuckles.com

http://www.theindierevenge.com

Summer is unquestionably back, and rather than cower in our air-conditioned living rooms, we’re going to do the least sensible thing possible: pile into a van, load a trailer, and drive through the hottest part of America. Fortunately, we’ll be in good company. Not only will we be joined by the Funky Knuckles, but we’ll also be sharing many dates with an incredibly cool band out of Atlanta called the Indie Revenge. There’s a scary amount of musicianship between these groups. We’re anticipating Dethklok-level destruction.

We’ve gotten some great feedback since the release of our second studio effort, Populace, and it’s going to be the most fun in the world to take the new tunes from Texas to New York starting in late July. We’ll be cutting a path from Dallas to the Northeast, and there are still a few dates left to be worked out, but here’s what’s confirmed:

Progger and the Funky Knuckles

July 28: Dallas, TX (the Free Man)

July 29: Austin, TX (One2One)

July 30: New Orleans, LA (Blue Nile)

July 31: Hattiesburg, MS (the Thirsty Hippo)

Progger, the Funky Knuckles, and the Indie Revenge

August 1: Atlanta, GA (529)

August 2: Asheville, NC (the One Stop)

August 5: Raleigh, NC (Pour House Music Hall)

August 6: New York, NY (Rockwood Music Hall)

August 7: Philadelphia, PA (the Grape Room)

Our 2nd album, “Populace,” releases today

In January we went back into Austin’s beautiful Yellow Dog Studios to work on our second album, and after two really fun days of recording, hanging, and making grown-up creative decisions, we came out with a collection of tunes that we’re really happy with. 2013 was a crazy, tumultuous year for all of us, but even through personal chaos we were able to make some pretty satisfying sounds happen.

We took the same approach to this album as we did with our first, “Beatmaker.” I tend to subscribe to the Steve Albini school of studio recording. That’s not to say that we’re the instrumental funk-jazz-fusion version of Nirvana, or that this is our “In Utero” by any means, but I do believe that time spent in the studio should be spent recording music that the band already knows really well. Pre-production involves spending a considerable amount of time composing, rehearsing, and playing gigs, so that when the band goes into the studio, they don’t waste time, they just play music they’re comfortable playing and have a great time doing it. We recorded eight tunes in two days, and it really didn’t even feel like work. It was just fun. We spent very little time on overdubs and fixes, and most of the overdubbing that was done was to add parts that are physically impossible to play with just the six of us (like when I need to be playing keys and tenor at the same time, or Nick needs to layer some Moog onto the bass sound). There’s more “garage band” sloppiness to this album than a lot of other instrumental albums, and I’m perfectly OK with that.

Everyone in the band brought a beautiful attitude along with tons of skill to this record. Paul plays some trombone solos that I think are frankly legendary. Carter plays some similarly murderous guitar, and Matt Muehling’s delightful rage shows through really clearly. Nick and Daniel simply crushed the foundation on every single tune. Matt Meli, our engineer, put more time, effort, skill, and energy into making everything sound awesome than we could every repay him for. He was definitely a real part of the band for this project, for both recording and mixing. Our new friend Sam Minae did a fantastic job with mastering, too.

Since members of Progger have spent the year scattering to various parts of the world– from Austin to New York, Los Angeles, China, and around the world with various bands– we’ve had some serious help recently from some awesome new musicians to help make the live shows happen. Snarky Puppy members Justin Stanton, Chris McQueen, and Bob Lanzetti have contributed their considerable talents, as have New York musicians Andy Martinek, Noah Kellman, Dan Muniz, Ross Pederson, Julia Adamy, Aki Ishiguro, William Tatge, and Daniel Foose. We’re definitely feeling the love, and the future is holding some exciting possibilities for us!

Here are some good places to pick up a copy of the new record:

Bandcamp

CD Baby 

If you get the inclination to help us out really significantly without having to expend that much energy, do us a favor and post those links on your favorite social website. It’s really amazing how far that goes, seriously! Thanks for all your love and support!

Brian/Progger

Summer release shows!

Our second full-length record, “Populace,” will be released on Tuesday, May 13, 2014. That is really exciting to us. We worked hard on it, we’re proud of how it came out, and we’re very excited to get it into the ears of people who are thirsty for this kind of music. What’s even more exciting is that we have a serious string of release shows coming up in May, July, and August, and we’ll be pairing up with some really great bands to help the festivities! Joining us in July and August will be the Funky Knuckles from Dallas and the Indie Revenge from Atlanta, and some other really brilliant acts are in the works. We’ll announce them after they’re confirmed… but, suffice it say, it’s going to be awesome.

The Knuckles recently released their amazing 2nd album, too, and you should seriously listen to it a lot. I do. This is a good place to get it.

Likewise, if you want to preorder our new one, I encourage you to do it via bandcamp, as well.

And the Indie Revenge has an album, too! Dig it.

Here are the shows we have booked or in the works so far:

Summer 2014
May 10: Progger at Rockwood Music Hall stage 2, New York, NY
May 28: Progger at the Grape Room, Philadelphia, PA
July 28: Progger and the Funky Knuckles at the Free Man, Dallas, TX
July 29: Progger and the Funky Knuckles at One2One, Austin, TX
July 30: Progger and the Funky Knuckles at Gasa Gasa, New Orleans, LA
July 31: Progger and the Funky Knuckles at the Thirsty Hippo, Hattiesburg, MS
August 1: Progger, the Indie Revenge, and the Funky Knuckles at 529, Atlanta, GA
August 2: Progger, the Indie Revenge, and the Funky Knuckles in Athens, GA (tbd)
August 3: Progger, the Indie Revenge, and the Funky Knuckles in Nashville, TN (tbd)
August 4: Progger, the Indie Revenge, and the Funky Knuckles in Asheville, NC (tbd)
August 5: Progger, the Indie Revenge, and the Funky Knuckles at the Pour House, Roanoke, VA
August 6: Progger, the Indie Revenge, and the Funky Knuckles in New York (tbd)
August 7: Progger, the Indie Revenge, and the Funky Knuckles in Washington DC (tbd)

We can’t wait to hit the road and play some shows! And we hope to see you out there, wherever you are.

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New Progger album, “Populace,” available for preorder

Yo! Our new album, “Populace,” is going to be officially released on May 13. If you preorder it now on Bandcamp, you’ll be able to download one of the tracks right away, and you’ll get the others as soon as it’s released. We’ll also have hard copies up for sale on the release date.

We cannot even begin to express how much the support of our fans, friends, and family has contributed to making all this happen. We’re excited about making new music, and when other people get excited about hearing new music, things move forward. The last year has been really beautiful, with a lot of crazy energy all around.

A lot of really cool things came together for this record. Most of the material was seasoned from lots of concerts in Texas, New York, and on the road (with, for example, the Funky Knuckles), but a couple of them were virtually brand-new for the session. Funny enough, those two had been written, or at least mostly written, upwards of five years ago, but the band never played them live. They came together really quickly and really well, and the recording process was remarkably smooth and fun.

Also, last year I had the pleasure of getting to know a brilliant graphic designer from Lisbon, Portugal named Emilia Mendes. Emilia has contributed her beautiful work to several recentSnarky Puppy creations as well as the new Funky Knuckles record, “Meta-Musica,” and now she’s graced Progger with her talents. Her work is world-class, and she’s simply lovely to work with. I’m very grateful she became part of the team!

To help get the word out, we smashed together a fun ghetto indie guerrilla promo video featuring the track “Clouding,” which you can find on Youtube. Check it out if you get a chance, and if you want to help us out in a huge way by doing something that takes minimal time and energy, please feel free to “share” or “tweet” it, or whatever the kids are doing these days. It really makes a difference!

We’ll be playing strings of shows in the Northeast and the South over the next few months, so check back for details! Thanks for the love, everyone.