Super Aphro Beat from San Francisco California
Emerging in 2003 from the fertile San Francisco Bay Area music scene, Aphrodesia's highly original brand of Super Aphro Beat and uncompromising political stance made them resist easy classification. In 2004, the band exploded into the national consciousness with the Just Vote Tour, a swing-state voter registration tour that took the band all the way to NYC and back in their vegetable oil-powered bus and landed the group on the cover of USA Today. The band's debut CD, Shackrobeat Vol. 1 (Flatbed Lamborghini), was picked as one of the best records of 2003 by the East Bay Express, and showstopping performances in 2004, 2005 and 2006 at the Aspen JazzFest, the Earthdance Festival, the Sierra Nevada World Music Festival, the High Sierra Music Festival and many other festivals and venues won the group high praise. Meanwhile, the band opened for Steel Pulse in California and Colorado and shared festival stages with everyone from Willie Nelson to Ozomatli to Zap Mama. Aphrodesia's second CD, 2005s "Front Lines" (Full Cut Records), was featured on National Public Radio, won rave reviews from media outlets from Global Rhythm Magazine to the Village Voice and broadened the band's already wide appeal even further, setting the stage for their landmark trip to Africa.
Aphrodesia's music carries with it a strong sense of social justice, and the band has been known to write their own politically-charged lyrics while updating Fela Kuti classics like No Agreement and Zombie. But the bands commitment to social change extends offstage as well. Having headlined numerous benefits for causes ranging from AIDS prevention to Tsunami Relief to anti-Iraq War organizations, Aphrodesia is devoted to 'walking the walk as well as talking the talk'. Believing that alternative energy is necessary both to protect our planet's environment and to reduce America's dangerous dependence on foreign oil, the band proudly travels in a vegetable-oil powered bus- meaning its one of the few groups of any stripe not sponsored by Chevron, Texaco, and co. It may be a small start, but the group believes that its actions, like its music, can have a huge effect.
|We Never Sleep|
|Marcus Stephens||tenor saxophone||2003-present|
|Lara Maykovich||vocals, mbira||2003-present|