Memphis-based GRAMMY nominee Southern Avenue released their rendition of the 1983 Genesis classic “That’s All” today. The now 6-piece blues-soul act lays out their funky, groovy imprint of the track that is out via Color Red, record label, a music platform founded by Eddie Roberts of The New Mastersounds. The group will be celebrating the release with a performance at Salvage Station in Asheville, North Carolina.
Southern Avenue first flew into our radar in 2016, when finalists at the International Blues Challenge. They were a 4-piece group then, made up of sisters Tierinii and TK Jackson, Israeli born guitarist Ori Naftaly, and bassist Daniel McKee. Ori’s electric guitar and Tierinii’s Gospel vocals melded perfectly to create a new Memphis sound. Taking their name from a famous Memphis street, they released a debut EP that spring, and followed it the following year with their eponymous full album, becoming the first Bluff City band to sign with the legendary Stax Records label in over 40 years. They also added Stax Music Academy alumnus Jeremy Powell on keyboards to the group.
Their debut LP won a Blues Blast award for “Best Emerging Artist Album,” in 2018, helping to fuel the juggernaut of a group into their sophomore release, Keep On, the following year. That album proved an even bigger success, debuting among the top 5 on Billboard’s “Top Blues Albums” chart amidst worldwide critical acclaim, ultimately earning Southern Avenue their first GRAMMY® Award nomination, for “Best Contemporary Blues Album”, and a BMA nomination for “Band of the Year.”
In 2020, they signed with Renew Records/BMG. Produced by Multi-GRAMMY® winner Steve Berlin (Los Lobos, Susan Tedeschi, Deer Tick), their Be The Love You Want, hit the streets in August, 2021, garnering them another “Band of the Year” nomination. All the while, Southern Avenue has played an average of 150 shows per year, earning slots at coveted festivals including Bonaroo and Austin City Limits, and supporting prominent acts such as Sheryl Crow, Tedeschi Trucks Band, Jason Mraz, Los Lobos, JJ Grey & Mofro, and more.
While recently on tour in the UK, Naftaly played his bandmates, (which now includes a third Jackson sister, Ava, on backing vocals and Evan Sarver on bass), some of his favorite music from UK-based artists that he grew up on. He went deep playing the first three Genesis albums back-to-back and the band went further down the rabbit hole by watching a documentary on the group. Vocalist Tierinii had always been a fan of Phil Collins and when it came time for the band to vet songs to cover, Naftaly suggested an 80s-era Genesis hit. Southern Avenue takes the already groovy pop-rock song and gives it a soulful spin with controlled command in the studio that translates into an electrifying banger at live shows driven by luscious vocal harmonies and vintage organ and guitar tones.
Honoring the southern soul legacy with a 21st-century sensibility, the band shows no signs of slowing down. They will close out 2022 with a four-show run in The Netherlands in early December which culminates with a headlining performance at the Basel Blues Festival in Switzerland on December 20th. They return to the US with a pair of New Year’s weekend shows in Colorado at Schmiggity’s (Steamboat Springs) on December 29th and Center for the Arts Crested Butte on December 31st (a themed event, dubbed “A Funkified Formal Affair”). Southern Avenue has already announced several major international events in 2023 including the Legendary Rhythm & Blues Cruise and the Bluesfest Byron Bay (Australia).