The talent: Marcus Perkins (vocals), Kevin K.D. Sims (vocals), Steve Shanley (keyboards), John Hall (bass), John Reasoner (guitar), Ryan Hoagland (drums), Jeff Schafer (baritone sax), Bob Manson (trombone), Peter Hart (tenor sax), Jason Maiers (trumpet) and Steve King (trumpet).
The sound: Jazz fusion
What happens when you combine 11 musicians of varying ages, influences and backgrounds? In the case of Funk-Stop, you get a high impact, soulful sound that features powerful horns and rhythm.
Hailing from all over the country, including Washington D.C., and Chicago, all members found their way to Cedar Rapids and each other. From the ashes of Funk 101, Funk-Stop has a new drummer, but the same instruments and many of the same musicians. Many are music instructors with doctorates and masters degrees by day, as well as musicians who play for a living. They also welcomed back one of their original singers who spent several years fronting Mean Street and the Hell Horns.
“About a year ago, Steve Shanley, John Hall and I had lunch and talked about putting a kick-ass horn band together to do more Jazz/Fusion,” says guitarist Reasoner. “We are very lucky to be able to do this where we live. It has given us the opportunity to give back to the community by way of benefits and school (performances). Being able to do what you love and help others is what it is all about.”
Inspired by Tower of Power, James Brown and Earth, Wind and Fire, Funk-Stop currently performs covers but hopes to tackle original material soon.
“Our main goal is to keep playing together,” Reasoner says. “We don’t really care too much about the money. We are in it for the music.”
Drummer Ryan “Hoagy” Hoagland agrees.
“We have a blast playing on stage with each other, playing great music,” he says. “It doesn’t get much better than that.”