Funky, Denver-based rock band Fox Street is bringing high-energy soul music to The Smokehouse on Hilton Head Island on Oct. 31 for Funk-O-Ween. The band's bluesy, soulful mix of sounds will provide a backdrop for a night of costumes and libations.
More treat than trick, Fox Street grooves on stage with a laid-back yet lively stage presence. The band is made up of Jonathan "Skippy" Huvard on guitar and vocals, James Dumm also on guitar and vocals, Eric Low on drums, Dave Solzberg on bass and Micro Altenbach on saxophone.
Voted Best Traditional Rock Band at the 2013 Denver Westward Music Showcase, Fox Street elicits comparisons to JJ Grey and Mofro as well as The Black Crowes.
The band's roots can be traced to the University of Colorado, where the group of music students would get together and play at a house on Fox Street. Then they went on tour with veteran jam band The New Mastersounds, playing upward of 70 shows with them.
"We owe a lot to those guys," Huvard said. "They showed us what it takes to be a road band."
And though Fox Street does a fair bit of jamming, too, stretching songs with guitar and saxophone solos, Huvard insists they are not a jam band in the Phish-y, improvised-set sense.
"Even if the songs are a little bit longer, they are all composed sections," he said.
That rings true on their latest album, "Tough Talk," released earlier this year. The band wrote songs collaboratively between tours and decided that the vintage sound they were creating would work best on tape instead of digital.
Huvard's husky singing voice and the band's upbeat jazziness does have an old-school feel, but is still suitable for the present-day bars they enliven.
Coming from the Denver music scene, a city that reared the likes of The Lumineers, 3OH3! and The Fray, Fox Street has a hub of local talent to contend with on its home turf. But Huvard said the atmosphere is amenable and supportive.
"I've played four nights this week with just a random assortment of colleagues and friends," he said. "But there's definitely a high level of musicianship. Denver fans expect that."
Within the next five to 10 years, Huvard said he expects Denver to blossom into a music mecca.
For now, Fox Street will continue to tour, injecting funk into every show. Hilton Head will be no exception, Huvard said.
"We'll have something special and we'll be wearing costumes, but I won't spoil it."
Follow Erin Shaw at twitter.com/IPBG_ErinShaw.