First and foremost it is important for you to know that I am wearing a black turtleneck and blue jeans as I type this message. But seriously folks, I would like to share some band news with you as we wrap up 2014.
I started Ted Sirota’s Heavyweight Dub as a “project” with the thought that I would see where it leads. We started rehearsing just drums & bass in January of 2013 and played our first gig at the end of March of the same year. By April 3rd I had somehow managed to talk with The Scientist. We decided to do a record together, and embarked on a Kickstarter campaign. The Kickstarter ended successfully on May 3. From May 3 – July 1, I wrote and arranged the material for the record and searched frantically for musicians who could learn and play this music for the recording. To make a long story short, we did complete the record and released it on Sept 20, the day of our CD Release Party as part of the Chicago World Music Festival 2013 at Martyrs’ in Chicago.
Since that CD release we have gone through many different lineup changes and musicians until we arrived at our current lineup. I’m happy to say that with this roster of musicians the group has progressed from a “project” to a true BAND. The musicians who have been playing with the band have been dedicated to the music and the mission and are starting to see it as their own – not just a project in which they are sidemen.
In order to reflect this development we are shortening the name of the band from “Ted Sirota’s Heavyweight Dub’ to HEAVYWEIGHTDUB! That’s right! All caps AND an exclamation point! BOOM! We feel that this more condensed band name will be easier for people to remember and will reflect more of the collective sense of the band. This should eliminate people erroneously calling the band names such as “Tom Sriracha’s Reggae Band” or “Ted Sirota and the Heavyweights” or “Todd Sirota’s Heavyweight Dub Champions”. At least that’s what we’re hoping. So, you will start seeing the band listed as HEAVYWEIGHTDUB! Don’t be alarmed. Same great music, new and improved packaging. Help us spread the word about the name change if you don’t mind.
We are in the pre-production stage of recording our new record. We plan to record in the first quarter of 2015 and hope to have it released shortly thereafter. We are excited about recording because we feel that we have developed a distinctive band sound over the past stretch of time and are anxious to let the world know what we sound like with our own King Tony on the mix. We will definitely be pressing vinyl this time so fret not DJ’s and analog heads! We’ll keep you posted on our progress.
Our monthly residency at the Whistler, “The Dub Connection”, has been a success and has been extended at least through the first half of 2015. Thanks to all that have supported this night. For those of you who haven’t made it out, it’s not too late! Starting in January we will be switching to the 2nd Thursday of the month, so our next Whistler date is Jan 8. We will be celebrating the tenor sax and featuring the music of Tommy McCook and Cedric IM Brooks.
In other exciting news, we are pleased to announce that we will be starting another monthly gig at Emporium Arcade Bar in Wicker Park. We will be at Emporium every 4th Friday of each month. Like the Whistler, there is NO COVER. Somehow our Dub seems to fit right in with the Pac-Man, Galaga, and Dig Dug machines and we are looking forward to playing there each month. Our first gig of the series is Jan 23. Mark your calendars!
We would like to thank EVERYBODY that came to one of our shows, liked us on FB, followed us on Twitter, bought the CD or MP3, told a friend about us, or hired us for a gig in 2014! We are on a mission to bring great Dub/Reggae music with a massive sound, played and mixed by great musicians, to the world and we want you to take the ride with us. FORWARD!
Peace & Dub,