Kevin Coelho

Kevin Coelho

Kevin Coelho

Funkengruven: The Joy of Driving a B3

Chicken Coup Records / Tony Monico Productions / Columbus Sound

Dang, this kid is GOOD! And so is the sound of the vintage Hammond B3 organ, the stock keyboard instrument for stadium rockers in the ’60s and ’70s. It features a distinctive sound based on a somewhat compromised electro-mechanical scheme to replace complicated pipe organs with spinning metal disks, and once you hear one, you’ll recognize it in a heartbeat.

Sixteen-year-old Kevin Coelo is a bit of a prodigy on the instrument. He’s mastered the jazz, gospel, and rock sounds and while he sometimes sounds a bit like a classic airport hotel bar, he boasts skills that most other musicians take decades to acquire. Opener “Funkengruven” is a floppy-eared romp through easy listening jazz. It’s got enough melody and chord structure to sound a bit pop, and enough dissonance and unexpected changes to please the hardcore jazz fan. Herbie Hancock’s “Cantaloupe Island” feels similar, but after a while we bump into Otis Redding hanging out on the waterfront. It takes a few bars to “get” what Coelho is doing, but once you are in the groove, you’ll agree “Dock of the Bay” is a completely cool rearrangement of a classic blues-pop tune.

Coelho’s skill isn’t just in hitting the right ivory. He brings a fresh view to arranging and composing and takes the B3 where few have gone before. The only problem with this record is that it straddles genres; it’s not exactly in any one easy-to-market music segment. I would recommend this to jazz, blues, and sacred musicians with equal ease, and anyone looking to take classic rock and repurpose it to a new generation can get some tricks here. Now, if you’re good enough to PLAY them, then you might be on to something as big as Mr. Coelho.

Kevin Coelho: chickencouprecords.comsummitrecords.comb3monaco.com

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Recently on Ink 19...

  • Bobby Rush
    Bobby Rush

    Chicken Heads: A 50-Year History of Bobby Rush ( Omnivore Recordings). Review by James Mann.

  • Geezër
    Geezër

    Geezër brought their old-school show all the way from their Miami rest home, and Julius C. Lacking thinks they were quite spry.

  • Bully
    Bully

    Bully greets Orlando with apathy and anger toward one of its theme parks. Jen Cray smiles and thinks, “Man, this band would have fit in well in the nineties!”

  • Luther Dickinson
    Luther Dickinson

    Blues & Ballads: A Folksinger’s Songbook: Volumes I & II (New West Records). Review by James Mann.

  • Conway
    Conway

    Big Talk EP (Self-Released). Review by Jen Cray.

  • Freakwater
    Freakwater

    Scheherazade (Bloodshot Records). Review by James Mann.

  • The Haymarket Squares
    The Haymarket Squares

    Light It Up. Review by Carl F Gauze.

  • Ani DiFranco
    Ani DiFranco

    Years pass, and so do our legends, but one constant remains: there are always artists living and breathing that are worth your time and attention. Ani DiFranco is a major one, according to Jen Cray and a whole legion of fans.

  • Javier Escovedo
    Javier Escovedo

    Kicked Out Of Eden (Saustex Media). Review by James Mann.

  • Eszter Balint
    Eszter Balint

    Airless Midnight (Red Herring). Review by Bob Pomeroy.

From the Archives