Who Are The Wood Brothers?

Editor’s Note - Rashon A. Massey

‘You never can pray enough’ are words from a chorus that will never ring more true than when you hear the thump-tacular walking basslines of Chris Wood march right into your soul.  The springing resonance of his upright bass notes give you a sense of purpose, reminding you no other place exist but the here and now, and as Oliver revives an old electric guitar sound that places you in a backyard swamp shack of the south, you find yourself wanting just a little more.  The desire is satisfied in the harmonious underbelly of their sibling vocals, and at the moment when the instrumentation of their bodies channels the tools they possess in their hands, you find yourself with closed eyes, almost praying that the show never ends.  And you realize then, you just can’t pray enough.

So you buckle up and continue to enjoy the natural ascension of music brought forth by two masters of sound.  Chris Wood of the jazz defying trio Medeski, Martin & Wood brings blues and songwriting to the forefront with brother Oliver, a special feat that you are not able to witness and be part of with a MMW show.  No – these boys are bringing you a piece of down home spirituality with the music from their album Loaded, infused with rich gospel progressions and soul riffs you get on a Sunday morning in a baptist church.  The duo take you on a journey in the back of a pickup down a dirt road, holding a glass of lemonade on a summer afternoon, passing neighbors waving from their rocking chairs on the front porches cloaked in willow tree shade.

The Avett Brothers transport you to a North Carolina coast, reminding you of love and family.  Robert Randolph and the Family Band take you straight to the dance aisle between pews of a very sweaty  congregation.  But the Wood Brothers keep you right where you are and with the two instruments, pull an experience of lifetimes from your lungs as you sing and hum along to catchy choruses while tapping your foot.  Even if you don’t know how to play harmonica, if the person next to you were to hand you one durng an intimate performance of the brothers… you would surely consider giving it a wail.

That is exactly why Jason Turgeon and Joseph McGonegal are headed to see the boys play at the Paradise Rock Club in Boston, MA tomorrow, December 08.  Removed from the mass of festival audiences and placed in a dark showcase illuminated by simple stage lighting is exactly the way you want to experience the Wood Brothers.  Not often do we get a chance to sit back, enjoy music we seldom hear anymore and also get schooled in versus, wisdom and tales that date back farther than the eldest person in the room; stories made tangible through passed-down songs from legendary musicians.  This intimate opportunity becomes more than a show, but a good time smile leaving you wanting a soapbox to shout to the world : Is anybody listening to real music anymore?

Check out Jason Turgeon’s show review later this week, but until then – here is the official Wood Brothers website where you can find tour dates, song samples and more.


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