Jazz Night in America

Jazz Night In America Videos

NO BS! Brass Band

Download Audio

12 min 10 sec

Just southeast of the Virginia Commonwealth University campus in Richmond, Va., lies a compact neighborhood called Oregon Hill. Historically, it's been a (white) working-class part of town, affordable for students and various bohemian types. Recording engineer Lance Koehler was drawn to the place when he moved to Richmond from New Orleans; it's where he eventually found a two-story garage and converted it into his own recording studio and home. It didn't take him long to start doing business across the Richmond music map: Koehler is good at his job, and he's affordable. His business is called Minimum Wage Studios for a reason.

He's also a drummer, and though he grew up in Southern California, his time in New Orleans left a deep impression. Inspired by the Crescent City's modern brass bands, in 2006 he started the NO BS! Brass Band with trombonist Reggie Pace. They had a place to fit between 10 and 13 musicians for rehearsal, and they had the means to document their work. And, owing to VCU and its conservatory program — with a history of producing top-notch jazz players — they had plenty of great horn players at their disposal.

Funky and danceable, the NO BS! Brass Band takes after the full black-music continuum you hear in groups like Rebirth or the Hot 8. But it's also proggy, and a bit brutalizing, and full of pride in a different Southern outpost. The group's new album is called RVA All Day, after all. And about that jazz cred: In July, it'll release another album called Fight Song, so named because it features the band's arrangements of Charles Mingus compositions.

Recently, Koehler, Pace and nine other musicians piled into a bus and journeyed up the freeway to NPR Music's Tiny Desk in Washington, D.C. They blasted us with songs from the new album — it was so loud, you could hear the music on the other side of the building, a floor down. And this summer, when Pace isn't out with Bon Iver's touring band, they'll strike out from Oregon Hill to fly the Richmond flag up and down the East Coast.

Set List
  • "RVA All Day"
  • "Run Around"
  • "Infamous"
Personnel
  • Lance Koehler, drums
  • Reggie Pace, trombone
  • Bryan Hooten, trombone/vocals
  • John Hulley, trombone
  • Dillard Watt, bass trombone
  • David Hood, alto saxophone
  • Marcus Tenney, trumpet
  • Sam Koff, trumpet
  • Ben Court, trumpet
  • Taylor Barnett, trumpet
  • Stefan Demetriadis, tuba
Credits

Producer: Patrick Jarenwattananon; Editor: Gabriella Garcia-Pardo; Audio Engineer: Kevin Wait; Videographers: Denise DeBelius, Gabriella Garcia-Pardo

[+] read more[-] less

More From Tiny Desk

Tiny Desk Concert with Happyness Morgan Walker/NRR hide caption

itoggle caption Morgan Walker/NRR

Tiny Desk

Happyness

If you're a fan of dark, incredibly dry, wry humor, you've just found Happyness.

Tiny Desk Concert with Mitski Lydia Thompson/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Lydia Thompson/NPR

Tiny Desk

Mitski

Mitski's music is dark and even scary, but glimmers of beauty peek through.

Gabrielle Smith performs as Eskimeaux at a Tiny Desk Concert on July 14, 2015. Emily Bogle/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Emily Bogle/NPR

Tiny Desk

Eskimeaux

There's lighthearted, almost childlike beauty in the way Gabrielle Smith puts words to song.

Tiny Desk Concert with Caroline Rose. Lydia Thompson/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Lydia Thompson/NPR

Tiny Desk

Caroline Rose

Rose plays music as if she's just met her new best friend: It's fresh, fun and enthusiastic.

Tiny Desk Concert with Son Lux Lani Milton/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Lani Milton/NPR

Tiny Desk

Son Lux

The trio blows up its sound by adding off-duty, civilian horn players from the U.S. Marine Band.

Tiny Desk Concert with Kacey Musgraves Lydia Thompson /NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Lydia Thompson /NPR

Tiny Desk

Kacey Musgraves

The country singer plays four songs from Pageant Material, plus the set-closing "Follow Your Arrow."

Tiny Desk Concert with Restorations Morgan McCloy/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Morgan McCloy/NPR

Tiny Desk

Restorations

The Philly rock band's big-hearted songs are stripped down to a few guitars and a MiniKorg.

Tiny Desk concert with Torres Lydia Thompson/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Lydia Thompson/NPR

Tiny Desk

Torres

Mackenzie Scott's music channels Patti Smith and PJ Harvey while hinting at further growth.

Tiny Desk Concert with SOAK. Lydia Thompson/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Lydia Thompson/NPR

Tiny Desk

SOAK

Irish singer-songwriter Bridie Monds-Watson makes the most of a single voice and an acoustic guitar.

Back To Top