The Alexis P. Suter Band will be raising the roof at Black-eyed Sally’s on Saturday. They are rising star’s on the roots, blues and soul scene.
Suter has a powerful bass/baritone voice add some emotional seasoning and a wide streak of attitude.
She has won the praise of greats from B.B. King to Levon Helm. The Band is a fixture at Levon Helm’s Midnight Rambles. Helm has been interested in Suter’s career and offered help along the way. Another fan is Dan Akroyd, who called her “America’s number one contender for the new Queen of the Blues.”
When you see Suter her vocal power immediately gets your attention. Any mention of her singing uses “powerful” in her description. The Suter band has been wowing audiences for a number of years now. Connecticut fans might remember her performance at the Berlin Blues Festival and later at Sally’s.
Now they are in demand at North American festivals. I first saw them when they opened The Pocono Blues Festival on Friday night. The next day in the VIP room, I interviewed her and got a chance to know her better.
Born in Brooklyn, NY, Suter came from a musical family. Her mother was a music teacher and singer who worked with Harry Belafonte, Mahalia Jackson, Sister Rosetta Tharpe and The Hall Johnson Choir. Early on, her daughter sang in recitals and Gospel plays and learned the power of her voice.
In the early 90’s, Suter became a staple of underground garage music and the first African American woman signed to Sony-Epic (Japan). Her acclaimed song “Slam Me Baby” made her an underground star, while she also still sang with New York’s Illumination Gospel Choir. Her debut CD, Shuga Fix on Hipbone Records was well-received by the music community and played on the radio nationwide. The band also released a CD/DVD recorded Live at The Midnight Ramble, and last year’s record Just Another Fool.
Suter’s newer releases have a lot of different styles – blues, soul and other roots music. She does a few cover Bob Dylan’s “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door,” which Suter sang at last New Year’s Eve’s Midnite Ramble in Woodstock, where people are still talking about it. More recently, Suter and her band previewed some of the new songs at The Turning Point in Piermont, NY where the entire kitchen staff came out and lined the hallway to hear her sing.
Now take that top-notch voice and her skill to capture an audience and add the secret weapon, a dynamite band. At every show, audiences show cheer with appreciation for funky beats from drummer Ray Grappone’s add in guitarist Jimmy Bennett with keyboard man Benny Harrison and Peter Bennett on bass. Now mix in the allure of back-up singers Vicki Bell and Linda Pino, for even more firepower.
This exciting band keeps capturing the attention of some of the best players around too. The sky’s the limit for The Alexis P. Suter Band!