G. LOVE and SPECIAL SAUCE

G Love and Special Sauce Full Throttle MagazineLive at Irving Plaza March 12, 2015

Started in 1993 Genre: Hip Hop-Blues, Band Members: Garrett Dutton aka G. Love – vocals/guitar/harmonica, Jim Prescott aka Jimi Jazz – bass. Jeffrey Clemens aka Houseman – drums

Tart, Tangy, Smooth, and oh so lip-smacking Sweet! Aaah yes, time to praise the almighty summer sippin’ thirst quencher, being served straight up G. Love and Special Sauce style, ice cool and always refreshing. Releasing records containing soul drenched tracks pouring out their blues infused hip-hop, which people have been trying to label for years. The best advice – don’t try to tame it or claim it; it’s simply their sonic trademark, instantly recognizable and addictively delicious.

The tradition of the hip-hop blues has always been to rip open the heart and bare the soul. Tell the listener what they want to hear and you’ll have a fair weather friend; tell them the way it is and you’ll have true love. Thankfully, the Love is Alive, for G. delivered his loping lilt with bone humming honesty at The Irving Plaza on March 12, and he’s never sounded so clear. From the swarming infectious grooves of “Hot Cookin”, “Baby’s Got Sauce”, and “Holla!” to the laid down easy of “Maxin Relaxin”, “Still I love you”, and “Just Fine” G. and The Sauce dance with the muses of their mentors, John Hammond, Bob Dylan, Jimmy Reed, De La Soul – without ever missing the beat of their own signature time.

For G. Love & Special Sauce, it began back in 1993, when G. Love serendipitously took the stage as a fill-in opening act at the Irish pub where Clemens’s then-girlfriend waited tables. “I’d had this idea that I needed to find a kid who could play blues, but also rap, and that’s exactly what I got,” says Clemens. “It was like, ‘This is the kid that’s speaking the language I hear in my head.’” Then 19, G. Love had recently moved to Boston from his native Philadelphia, where he first picked up a guitar at age eight and spent much of his teen years as a street musician. “I grew up right by a place called South Street where there were a lot of street performers, from puppeteers to this guy playing Mozart on wine glasses to classical guitar players,” he says. “One night I was out there and I finished playing a riff on my song and started rapping the lyrics to ‘Paid in Full’ by Eric B. & Rakim over a groove, and I was like, ‘Holy shit—that’s it.’” Heading to Boston the same summer he first started developing that hip-hop/blues hybrid, G. Love quickly connected with Clemens, who then tapped Prescott (a local musician he’d met through a jazz jam session). Within a week the three got together for a rehearsal—featuring G. Love on Dobro guitar, Clemens on a vintage drum kit with brushes instead of sticks, and Prescott on upright bass—and soon began working on songs for their debut album.

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Propelled by hit singles like “Cold Beverage” and “Baby’s Got Sauce,” G. Love and Special Sauce ultimately reached gold status and helped the band build a following that endures today. One of the songs originally written for that album (and inspired by G. Love’s early days in Boston and “those nights when I would just walk around and try to get somebody to buy me a pint of Jim Beam”), “Run for Me” makes its first-ever recorded appearance on Sugar and remains timeless in its portrait of the struggle of pursuing a musical passion. “At first I thought this record was gonna be a heartbreak record about my old relationship, but then the sentiment shifted,” says G. Love. “A lot of the songs became about coming up from where we started to where are now and still keeping it going, still staying afloat,” he continues. “To me that’s a much more interesting story to tell.”

Get your Sauce here: http://philadelphonic.com