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Freddys Finest features Michael "Hurly" Hurwitz, from the motion picture Joyful Noise and the Tommy Talton Band on bass, vocals and fronting the band. Ian Newberry from Newberry Jam on guitar, Spencer Pope on keys and Will Groth holding down the skins. The group's music is mostly original, writing upbeat songs that keep the party right. They also cover a few classics from the likes of the Beatles, Otis Redding, James Brown and more.
Michael "Hurly" Hurwitz, bass
Michael Hurwitz, a.k.a. Hurly, grew up in Waycross, Georgia. Early on, southern rock, blues, and soul made an impression on this young player, who was lucky enough to share the stage with a true legend, Jimmy Hall (Wet Willie) for the first time at the age of 16. Hurly moved to Atlanta, Ga. in 2007 to pursue a musical career; not long after he was embraced by it and began playing with such talents as Donna Hopkins, Diane Durrett, Ralph Roddenbery, and the group Stop Drop and Roll. In 2009 Michael was picked up by the Tommy Talton Band where he continues to make appearances. Hurly had been lucky enough to share the stage with such greats as Maceo Parker, Kofi and Oteil Burbridge, Grant Green, Jr., Chuck Leavell, Randall Bramblett, Greg Allman, and Jimmy Hall to name a few. In 2011 Hurly released his first solo album, Home Again.
In 2012 he was the bass guitar player in the film, Joyful Noise, with Queen Latifah and Dolly Parton.
Ian Newberry, guitar
Ian Newberry grew up in Dallas, Georgia where he began taking guitar lessons at the age of 13. During high school, Ian participated in Jazz Band and also Atlanta Youth Jazz Orchestra. After graduation, Ian enrolled in the Jazz Studies program at Georgia State University's School of Music.
Along with his love for jazz, Ian has proven his proficiency in several styles of music including bluegrass, rock, and blues. Ian maintains a busy performance schedule as both a sideman, and as a leader of his own creations. He has had the privilege to share the stage with many accomlished names in the music scene, including Bernard Purdie, Kofi Burbridge, and Yonrico Scott (of Derek Trucks Band), Sleepy Brown, Joi, Killer Mike, and more. Ian looks forward to traveling abroad with his music.
Spencer Pope, keyboards
Spencer has been involved in the Atlanta music scene since 1997, when he played his first gig at the Somber Reptile. Since 2001 he’s made a living off the music industry in some way or another. He toured with a jam band, made horrific pop music, ran sound in dive bars for four years, toured some more, and has had fun doing it. His favorite things in the world are writing and playing music, and he feels blessed every day he gets to do these things.
In addition to his solo work and work as a sideman, Spencer is member of Atlanta bands Sovus Radio and Ocha La Rocha. He has recorded with Ocha la Rocha, Andy the Doorbum, Anna Kramer and the Lost Cause, Pink Police, Hot Young Priest, Variac, PPR, a variety of country sessions, the Soundmen, and many more. On a side note, Spencer’s wedding was presided over by Rockette Morton, bassist for the legendary Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band.
In 2012 Spencer released his first solo recording The Dark The Light.
Will Groth is the fabulously talented drummer for Freddys Finest. His full bio will be available soon!
THEN THERE'S JIMMY HALL ...
"Jimmy - my soul brother!"
"If you are asking who I think is the best Southern Rock singer - hands down, Jimmy Hall, no question."
—John Bell, Widespread Panic
"For my money, Jimmy is the best white R&B singer alive."
There are many different opinions as to what the future of the blues harmonica will be. Memphis vocalist and harmonica player Brandon Santini is undeniably a worthy player to keep an eye on as the latest surge of young blues artists leave their footprint in blues history. His name is worthy of conversations that include Jason Ricci, Billy Gibson, Dennis Gruenling, Rick Estrin and other frontline harmonica players by combining his love and respect for traditional blues with a present, colorful style of playing that is often compared to James Cotton or Paul Butterfield. Raised in the Piedmont region of North Carolina, Brandon purchased his first harmonica in 1997 at the age of fifteen when his mother took him to the local music store upon his request. He founded the Blues Music Award nominated band Delta Highway in 2003 and relocated to Memphis where he absorbed the sounds and culture of the Delta and North Mississippi Hill Country, honing his craft night after night, sweating it out in local Beale Street clubs just like Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, and B.B. King did decades before him.This Time Another Year is Brandon’s second album, recorded at the legendary Ardent Studios in Memphis and features twelve dynamic performances from his former live band (playing over 220 shows together in 2012) while enlisting the help of good friends Victor Wainwright and Chris Stephenson. This sophomore effort was recorded live over a span of four days with minimal overdubs which created a very “live” sound. The album debuted at #12 on the Living Blues Radio chart spending three months in the Top 20 as well as picking up a prestigious nomination for “Contemporary Blues Album” in the 2014 Blues Music Awards . Brandon was also nominated for a 2014 Blues Music Award in the category of, “Instrumentalist- Harmonica” and a Blues Blast Music Award in the category of, “Sean Costello Rising Star!”
Wishbone Ash, one of the most influential guitar bands in the history of rock, kicks off the North American leg of their 2014 tour on April 15. The group returns to these shores to celebrate the release of their 24th studio recording, Blue Horizon, and perform their popular Live Dates album in its entirety.
Formed in 1969, Wishbone Ash pioneered a melodic twin-lead guitar style that has influenced bands from Thin Lizzy and Iron Maiden to Lynyrd Skynyrd and, more recently, heavyweights like Opeth. The group coalesces around strong songwriting and serious chops. Founding member Andy Powell handles lead vocals and trades licks with Finland’s guitar wizard Muddy Manninen. Bassist Bob Skeat, a 17-year veteran of the band and in-demand studio musician, sets the pace with Joe Crabtree, one of the best of Britain’s new breed of drummers, having played with Pendragon and David Cross of King Crimson.
Visit www.wishboneash.com to learn more.
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