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VISITING ACT ‌ The Sauce That Refreshes

G. Love & Special Sauce ain't just 'blues music' anymore

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G. Love: Thirsty for grooves
  • G. Love: Thirsty for grooves

Though he's still known to many as just the goofy, lanky "Blues Mu-zack" guy, Philly "smoove talker" G. Love has done well in outlasting his mid-'90s radio hit. Singer/guitarist/harp man Love (né Garrett Dutton) and his two-piece band Special Sauce (bassist Jimi "Jazz" Prescott and drummer Jeff "Houseman" Clemens) have long kept a busy tour schedule. Since forming in 1992, all that stage time has undoubtedly tightened their grooves and moves into quite a funky, loose-limbed blues and soul revue.

Their latest release, Lemonade, features the group – with guests like guitarist Donovan Frankenreiter, indie hip-hop duo Blackalicious, and Los Lobos' David Hidalgo – chowing down on a new set of sunny, laid-back speak-songs anchored by Love's slow urban drawl and thumping guitar licks. After a seven-year major label stint, Love's recent transition to the Jack Johnson-owned Brushfire imprint seems to have done him well, as new jams like "Hot Cookin," "Can't Go Back To Jersey," and "Ride" are nothing but toe-tapping, booty-swerving fun.

Soon, the Special Sauce crew will release their first DVD, On The Back Of the Bus, which captures the requisite tour antics and live performances including guest shots from old-school gangsta Big Daddy Kane and singer/songwriter Marc Broussard, who's opening for the band on their current tour. Like many of the soulmen and showmen they've idolized over the years, G. Love & Special Sauce's flava seems to have improved with age but, odds are, when they roll into Charleston or elsewhere, older staples like "Blues Music" and "Steppin' Stone" will still have no trouble getting the joint moving. –Michael Andrews

G. Love & Special Sauce share the stage with Marc Broussard at the Music Farm (32 Ann St., 853-3276) at 8 p.m. on Sun. Nov. 12. Tickets are $25 ($22.50 adv.). See www.musicfarm.com and www.epicrecords.com for more info.

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