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Jammin' with Color Blind

CV readers know my theories on local live music genres vs register sales. Classic rock is for the old folks. Young is hot, hip hop is the most profitable. The bands that play hip hop draw the biggest crowds (of youths) and those youths put the most cash in the drawer. The bands know it too. The highest paid bands in Cincy play hip hop and party rock. Lt. Dan’s New Legs, Naked Karate Girls, Rusty Griswold’s (who recently re-vamped their aging set list with more youth oriented music), The Menus, DV8 to name a few rake in thousands per show and stay fully booked for months in advance. Hip hop pays in spades over the other genres but yet the list of bands that do it well is shorter than you would think.
Color Blind is on that list. Pure hip hop & pop rules the set list. Two front men who can both rap their ass off (Dell “Dellicious” Lynch, & Eugene “Gene O” Oakes). A bass player (in a sports bra & leprechaun shorts) who can rap like a front man aside from thumping his green stringed bass (Brad Baldwin). An electronic drummer and keyboardist who stay steady and focused, keeping the tracks dead on (Glen Kilgore & Travis Lattimore). A guitar player who is happy to stay in the back and make that six string sing when it needs to (Matt Covert).
It all comes together with pro polish but the crowds probably doesn’t even notice. Sounds bad but that’s a good thing. The crowd is too entertained with the bass player’s antics of doing the Cupid Shuffle along with the ladies. Or watching the front men rap tag team a gaggle of girls, working the stage front honeys into a hip hoppin’ sweaty dance frenzy (much to the delight of the guys on the sidelines). Or get the crowd singing along like American Idol rejects when the band breaks into a fine Michael J cover. Or get the girlies bangin’ their booties up & down up & down when the band busts out with some Soldier Boy. I’ve seen it up close and personal. Maybe that’s why these guys were voted one of the best bands in Cincy by CV readers.
Unlike some hip hop cover bands, Color Blind plays it straight. As in, they don’t make a joke of every song and only play the melody and a couple verses. They play the tunes all the way through and if you’re sober enough to listen close (hopefully not) you’ll notice their live version is just like the original studio releases (or better). And with immense energy from the front men to keep all eyes glued to the stage. That’s the recipe for success.
All the big bars book this band. I snagged these pics at J-Hall. The crowd there was in full party mode thanks to the super cool “Beat It / Billie Jean” routine the guys did as I walked in. Moon walk and all, they tore it up. People cheered, girls reaching out screaming. It looks like an easy job, but it takes hard work. It takes talent and dedication. It looks all “Money for nothin’ and chicks for free” But the money is for the years of practice and the chicks, well I guess they really are free.
You normally don’t find these hot multi thousand dollar local bands outside the big 500 person capacity clubs. If you own a 100 person pub and charge a $5 cover, you might get $500-600 in cover for the night. That’s short if the band charges $1500. A grand out of the register. You need to sell 588 beers at $2.50 each just to pay the band. Not much left to pay rent, pay roll, insurance, workers comp, replenish the stock, promote, clean and taxes taxes taxes. Some pubs don’t even sell 600 beers in a night period. It’s tough to book big bands unless you have a big bar (with a big crowd). There is one pub that does it and loves it. Color Blind is there on Fri 24th, it’s J&B’s Tavern.
J&B’s is just breaking in a new stage with high dollar lighting and sound. They started off with the cheaper classic rock bands that you usually see in a pub. But as the crowd called out for more, the owner answered by booking more expensive bands. Now, J&B’s features top bands on a regular basis. Aside from all balls rock bands like Catch 22 (18th), J&B’s offers original acts such as the savage metal sounds of Rootbound and Specyphi (4th). Drop to the hip hop with Color Blind and House Party (3rd). Kick back with some good country with Kenny Welch (17th). Party like a frat brat with pop/hip hop acts Cover Model (11th) and Weezy Jefferson (25th). Not the banks, not Newport, right smack in Mt Carmel. J&B’s is busy busy busy keeping their hat in the band bar ring and rollin’ out the acts like the big city clubs. Aside from the new stage they’ve expanded and opened up room for more band fans. The place really looks great but honestly, if they keep upping the ante on the band list, I think they are going need a bigger bar.

 

 

 

 

 

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