Singles & EPs
About Butcher Brown
Richmond, Virginia's Butcher Brown are a proud throwback to the great progressive jazz-funk bands of the 1970s with a 21st century twist that makes room for hip-hop, garage punk, and futuristic jazz-funk. Though its members were all born well after the golden age of fusion, their modern hip-hop-inflected funky jazz-rock proudly echoes the innovations of Weather Report, Return to Forever, early Earth Wind and Fire, Lonnie Liston Smith, and Mahavishnu Orchestra. (They refer to their own music as "hip-hop Mahavishnu.") In addition to being a committed touring and recording quintet, each of its members is involved in high-profile side projects with name artists including Christian Scott, Nicholas Payton, Chris "Daddy" Dave, Rapsody, and 9th Wonder. Such outside collaborations, combined with numerous independent recordings as a band, have led to a deal with Concord Jazz, which released the album #KingButch in 2020.
DJ Harrison (keys, producer, and engineer), Andrew Randazzo (bass), and Corey Fonville (drums) formed Butcher Brown in 2012, and gradually became a quartet with the addition of Marcus Tenney (reeds, brass, MC) and Morgan Burrs (guitar). The establishing trio centered around activity at Harrison's analog Jellowstone Studios in Richmond. They began woodshedding and composing collectively, and their energetic jazz-funk/hip-hop jams made them the life of every party they played. Their debut long-player, All Purpose Music, was issued by Jellowstone via Ropeadope in 2014, followed by the self-released beat tape GrownFolk the following year.
Butcher Brown toured regionally, then nationally, as their reputation as an exciting live band spread among the independent music press and social media. The full-length self-released Virginia Noir followed in 2016, its critical notice -- underscored by more touring -- preceded the January 2017 Afrokuti: A Tribute to Fela EP, and The Healer in March. Thanks to hype generated by the internet and their active SoundCloud and Bandcamp pages, they got the attention of the Gearbox label, which released Live at Vagabond the same year, and played touring slots with Galactic and Kamasi Washington. In 2018, Gearbox released Butcher Brown's Camden Session, cut direct-to-disc at Mark Ronson's London studio. The band signed with the Universal-distributed Concord Jazz label, and in 2020 issued #KingButch. Tenney took the mike and shared it on one track with guest rapper Fly Anakin, while the instrumentals included updates of material written by and/or associated with Mtume and Ronnie Laws. ~ Thom Jurek & Andy Kellman