April 19, 2012. The Secret B-Sides return to Boone Saloon on Thursday, April 19, with their “cosmic enlightenment,” as band leader Juan Holladay describes his band’s message. The show starts at 10:00 a.m., and the cover is $5.
Holladay, the group’s lead singer and guitarist, said he coined the term “flower powered future soul,” adding that modern music lacks the “love” of the counterculture movement.
“We want to tap into the energy from the ‘60s and ‘70s—not only musically, but politically, spiritually and tap into the energy of people moving forward to claim their destiny,” he said.
Based in Asheville, the current Secret B-Sides quartet has performed together since 2008 and recently released Flowers and Chocolate. Since keyboard player Jeff K’noor co-owns a recording studio, the band was able to take its time to record the album, which took nearly three years.
Released this summer, Flowers and Chocolate has earned extensive airplay on WNCW, which currently has the album listed as a top regional selection, and has garnered rave reviews from Mountain Xpress, which named Secret B-Sides the No. 1 Soul Band and the No. 1 R&B/Blues Band.
“When the local old-school-meets-new-school soul/funk/R&B outfit dropped [its] sophomore album Flowers and Chocolate earlier this year, those sultry, sweaty, swaggering sounds hit just the right note,” Mountain Xpress wrote in October. “Add to that…a wrench-tight live show and…you begin to understand why the Secret B-Sides are the current reigning kings of soul.”
Three themes revolve throughout the Secret B-Sides’ music and image: love, dinosaurs and flying saucers. When asked about the trio, which Holladay called the band’s mythology, Holladay explained he used to play folk music and when an old girlfriend broke up with him, she said, “You need to play R&B music and it needs to be sexy and about dinosaurs flying through the cosmos.”
“I pretty much took her advice at face value and ran with it,” Holladay said.
Along with K’noor on keyboards and Holladay, who plays a nylon-stringed guitar, the band features drummer Robin Tolleson and bassist Shayne Heather. Tracks on Flowers and Chocolate have horns and feature guest hip-hop emcees, though the horn players and rappers don’t tour with the Secret B-Sides.
The current quartet released a live album in 2009 called “Live on the Mothership,” and Holladay released an EP called “Lost Episodes” under the moniker of the Secret B-Sides in 2007.
For more information about the band or the show, click to www.thesecretb-sides.com or call Boone Saloon at 828-264-1811.