The People’s Party, a band hailing from Venice Beach, California, is an eclectic mix of rock, funk, hip hop, jazz, and everything in between, dedicated to spreading love and unity in the celebration of life. Through its music and community outreach projects, The People’s Party supports progressive social ideals for the evolution of individuals and communities, to be based upon mutual respect, tolerance, and the knowledge of each one’s innate perfection.
The band’s original sound, dubbed “hippie hop”, borrows from a wide variety of genres. With rich vocal harmonies reminiscent of Motown and The Beatles, a thick, groove-filled rhythm section that can move from hip hop to acid jazz to rock with ease, infectious songwriting and lyricism, which varies from Paul Simon-esque to a Tribe Called Quest and beyond, a horn section along the order of Tower of Power and The Meters, and jams similar to Phish and The Grateful Dead, the music takes the audience on a wild musical ride.
“This Nation is undergoing a movement of change, rooted from the ground up, and we feel compelled to spread our conscious and positive message to those who historically have been fed misinformation and negativity. At every show, we help organizations and causes we believe in, including Rock The Vote, Vipassana meditation, and organic farming, by disseminating information to our audience and doing outreach. We want everybody to feel the love that surrounds us all.”
-Curtis James, The People’s Party
Not only does The People’s Party play clubs, bars, and festivals, but this evolutionary band also travels the nation in a massive truck that transforms into a 20,000 watt stage at the push of a button. This amazing piece of machinery, dubbed “The People’s Portable Party Platform” or “The Platform” for short, enables The People’s Party to set up and play anywhere, anytime. These spontaneous performances, or “Parties”, have been enjoyed across the nation, including the Super Bowl in Arizona, the Democratic presidential debates in Hollywood, San Francisco for the New Years celebration, the South By Southwest Music Festival in Austin, Texas, the 5th Anniversary of the Iraq War peace rally in Washington D.C., the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament in North Carolina, and the French Quarter Festival in New Orleans.
This musical and social movement began with the vision of a positive spirit from Massachusetts who moved out to California and found his new home in Venice Beach. Curtis James, with guitar and pen in hand, began creating a plethora of songs filled with a message of love, peace, self-exploration, and speaking truth to power. In 2004, he formed the People’s Party, partnering with David Garner, a Chicago native and UC Berkeley graduate, to play keys and sing; whose soulful voice and songwriting prowess added a powerful dimension to the music. On drums, they found Cleveland’s son, Orlando Boyd, affectionately known as “the Buddha”, to fill out the foundation with his passionate tonalities and intricate beats. Other musicians were added, but ultimately the group broke up due to creative differences.
After several other incarnations of The People’s Party with various musicians, Curtis James went out on his own, taking his songs into the studio to create an album with the help of Grammy Award winning Engineer Bob Tucker (Tupac, The Temptations) and other renowned and seasoned studio pros. After a year and a half of hard work, the result is an incredible studio masterpiece, “We Am One”, released in the summer of 2008.
With the album in its final stages of completion, James decided that it was time to form a new band, one of musicians with the integrity and passion to champion the movement of positive and uplifting social change. He brought back David and Orlando from the first project, and gathered the most talented musicians he could find. Tony Glaser, a funky Bay Area bass player and high school band-mate of David, was recruited to put his electric and upright stank and style on the groove. Robby Marshall, graduate from the esteemed USC Jazz Program, joined on sax and leader of the horn section. The incredible Justin Kirk on trombone, leader of The Makers, often lends his talents to the band, as well as Los Angeles native Chris Bautista, on trumpet. Will Volume, a virtuoso violinist and guitar player from North Carolina, rounds out the group, which has gelled into a posse of powerful professional party proliferators, poised to promote peace, love, and passion to the people in this positivity-deprived populous.