Last night featured one of the most wide-ranging Soul of the Blues lineups in recent months, and it was a smash. Nu Millennium, a talented and funny four-man a capella singing group from Brooklyn, opened the night with a set of classic soul (and a touch of disco). The crowd at Cornelia Street Cafe whooped so loud they threated to drown out the gentlemen on stage.
Then Florida’s Ernie Southern and his two shiny steel guitars rocked the crowd – quite a few of whom came specifically to see him – with a solo set of high-energy Delta blues. That primed our audience for a smooth, funky set from the Anthony Robustelli Band, which featured saxman extraordinaire Deji Coker. Keyboardist and singer-songwriter Robustelli runs a super-tight and soulful New York City act reminiscent of Steely Dan. Coker blew fire from his alto and the band was seriously cookin’.
Best thing was the good feeling that comes out of these shows. No one makes a ton of money, but the vibe is sweet. Nu Millennium’s fans stayed to hear Ernie, and Ernie’s fans stayed to hear Anthony and his band. All is good.