the most original and alluring fusion band I have heard in years!"
Banning Eyre, Afropop & NPR
“You’ll be hard-pressed to sit still during their show.”
Festival International de Louisianne
“Dangerously funky... an East-coast, funk-crazed Los Lobos”
“A fresh, vibrant hybrid that plants a foot in two disparate cultures and still dances up a storm."
“Nation Beat plays every fun style of music ever invented!"
“Comes off like a typical afternoon’s stroll through the
New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.
The blend is often irresistible.”
“Just a fantastic group. I was overwhelmed!”
FORRO. FUNK. BRASS.
Pounded by calloused hands; blasted by tight grooves. It calls across time and continents - with a response from hips and feet. It’s the force that blew through Louis Armstrong in the twenties. It’s the power that gets Brazilians swinging in the streets for carnival.
Nation Beat singularly conjures up this elemental musical mojo, drawing on the wellsprings of rhythm that lit up jazz and got maracatu thundering. Nation Beat takes off with be-bop-via-Brazil drumming; propelled by percussive bursts of New Orleans-flavored brass.
Band leader Scott Kettner has explored the musical similarities between American Roots music (Second Line, NOLA Jazz, Country, Zydeco, Blues) and Afro-Brazilian musics of Northeast Brazil (Maracatu, Forró, Mangue, Samba, Miranda, Frevo) not just through music but througn an historical lense. Ketter spent a couple of years in Brazil's northeast and its dusty land proved to be fertile ground for his musical exploration and imagination. As he became fluent in maracatu’s African-derived rhythms, he saw parallels with the African-rooted music of the United States. Kettner saw that the black history of the two regions was informed and shaped by a myriad of historical events, in particular the slave experience as Northeast Brazil and New Orleans were ports for the same slave traders, resulting in music forms that share roots, growing similarly - as Kettner says "like two twins seperated at birth".
Upon returning to New York, he created the groundbreaking band Nation Beat, where maracatu, Big Easy’s funk, forró, swinging jazz all dance together. Nation Beat exemplifies how music crosses borders and that similarities more often than not outweigh differences, not just in music but in life. American music and our experience of it owes a debt to many cultures, ethnicities and peoples, to many coming together as one. Kettner and Nation Beat live and breathe this.
But forget the musical history; this is music to make you dance.
Nation Beat is
Scott Kettner: Drums and Percussion
Paul Carlon: Tenor Sax/Arrangements
Mark Collins: Trumpet
Mariel Bildsten: Trombone
Joe Correia: Sousaphone
Nation Beat "Forró de Dois Amigos" Video