Penn State College of Arts and Architecture
Center for the Performing Arts at Penn State

Brassy Soul Rebels perform pop fare with New Orleans kick in free concert Sept. 20 at Eisenhower

The brass band The Soul Rebels will perform a free concert at 4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 20, as part of the Penn State College of Arts and Architecture artsUP celebration. The eight-piece group from New Orleans pushes boundaries with high-energy concerts incorporating soul, jazz, jam, funk, hip-hop, rock and pop music framed within the contemporary sound of the Crescent City.

Free tickets, available beginning Tuesday, Sept. 8, are required. Free tickets may be obtained at the Arts Ticket Center locations in Eisenhower Auditorium (weekdays 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.), HUB-Robeson Center (weekdays 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.) and Penn State Downtown Theatre Center (weekdays 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturdays 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.).

The Soul Rebels founding members Derrick Moss (bass drum) and Lumar LeBlanc (snare drum) wanted to perform their favorite popular music in the style of the New Orleans-style brass and marching bands with which they grew up. In 1991, the two started to recruit a group of like-minded musicians with the gusto to redefine popular music.

Sample the band’s music.

Some of the artists given The Soul Rebels treatment include Eurythmics (“Sweet Dreams are Made of These”), Kanye West (“Touch the Sky”), Michael Jackson (“Rock with You”), Daft Punk (“Get Lucky”), Bruno Mars (“Treasure”), Nicki Minaj (“Moment for Life”) and Drake (“Headlines”).

The band has collaborated with a who’s-who of pop, rock and hip-hop musicians, including Metallica, Maceo Parker, Green Day, Suzanne Vega, Joey Bada$$ and Billy Martin (Medeski, Martin and Wood). The group has shared billing with Jack White, Dave Matthews, The Allman Brothers Band, Alabama Shakes, George Clinton, Arcade Fire and John Mayer.

The Soul Rebels musicians have progressed from adding their signature sound to contemporary hits to writing and arranging their own brass-tinged compositions.

This summer the band performed at various jazz festivals throughout the world, including Jacksonville, Fla.; Washington, D.C.; Ottawa, Canada; Rochester, N.Y.; Istanbul, Turkey; Nice, France; and Telluride, Colo.

The Soul Rebels also have performed at pop music festivals such as Bonnaroo, Electric Forest, Austin City Limits, British Summer Time and Roskilde.

When not on the road, the band hosts a weekly “house party” at Le Bon Temps Roulé in New Orleans.