Review: FDeluxe Put The “F” in ‘Funk’ in New York

Posted by The G on October 30, 2011 under G Reviews | Read the First Comment

Photos by G.

FDeluxe: Jellybean Johnson, Eric Leeds, Susannah Melvoin, St. Paul Peterson

FDeluxe: Jellybean Johnson, Eric Leeds, Susannah Melvoin, St. Paul Peterson

October 29, 2011 was a day that funkateers in New York have been looking forward to for a very long time.  Fdeluxe played their debut show in New York at Joe’s Pub to a sold out crowd and they brought the funk!  In the mid-1980s, Prince formed a side project called The Family and they were the first band signed to his Paisley Park label.  Their self-titled debut album is one of the funkiest albums to come out of the 1980s with songs like “The Screams of Passion,” “High Fashion,” “Mutiny” and the original version of “Nothing Compares 2 U.”  The band recently reunited after 25 years apart and re-christened themselves Fdeluxe after Prince dickishly threatened legal action if the band kept their original name.  Under any name, St. Paul Peterson, Susannah Melvoin, Eric Leeds and Jellybean Johnson put the “F” in “funk” in New York.

St Paul Peterson

St. Paul Peterson

The band recently released “Gaslight,” their first album in 25 years and they played many tracks off the album tonight including the ultra funky “@ 8,” the title song, “Leeds Line,” highlighting the talents of one of the best saxophone players of all time, Eric Leeds, as well as the lush “Over the Canyon.”  The audience couldn’t have been happier in spite of a rare October snow storm in Manhattan making the commute to Joe’s Pub an unexpected weather adventure.  Getting to hear live versions of songs like “Desire” and “High Fashion” and “Mutiny” literally made my mouth hurt from smiling so big.  Those are songs I know inside and out and even if the rest of the world wasn’t hip to the funk, The Family (and now FDeluxe) have given my life endless hours of listening pleasure.

Susannah Melvoin

Susannah Melvoin

After every song, there was thunderous applause and it’s clear that New York does not want another 25 years to pass before FDeluxe plays for us again.  Before the night was over, Jellybean Johnson played bass as well as the drums, St. Paul Peterson played keyboards as well as the bass and Susannah shook her money maker and turned the funkin’ crowd out!  Eric Leeds had many great solos and I watched in awe as he destroyed us with his amazing saxophone playing.

Eric Leeds

Eric Leeds

Video from the show will be coming soon and perhaps in the comments section, you can let me know whether you’d like to see “High Fashion/Mutiny,” “The Screams of Passion” or “Nothing Compares 2 U.”  Viewer’s choice!  I can’t thank FDeluxe enough for such a great night and it will be one that I don’t forget any time soon!

Jellybean Johnson

Jellybean Johnson

See the set list after the jump.

Fdeluxe Set List at Joe's Pub on October 29, 2011

Fdeluxe Set List at Joe's Pub on October 29, 2011

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  • Connie said,

    Thanks for the review of the show – was absolutely miserable that I couldn’t make it. “The Family” was the soundtrack to my last two years of college and that vinyl lp (never mind my “Screams of Passion” 12″ single!) have been played to death over the last 25 years. I know everyone at Joe’s Pub – including the band themselves – must’ve known how special it was: I *really* hope they’ll do another NY show soon.

    PS – I met Susannah briefly at the old Bottom Line club back in 1990 while she was touring with her sister and Lisa Coleman. I had brought my “The Family” album with me (along with a few W&L ones) just on the chance I’d be able to snag an autograph. She seemed genuinely amazed that someone even had a copy of the album, much less wanted it signed! Sinead’s megahit version of “Nothing” had been out the year before so Susannah wrote “I want what Sinead has!” on my LP. Pretty funny (though prob dead serious!) – one of my prized possessions.

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