KEXP Suggests: Spekulation with The Teaching @ Royal Room 6/19

Local Music, KEXP Suggests
Jake Uitti

Seattle band The Teaching has the distinction of being the only group featured on an instrumental track from Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’ album, The Heist, a 5-minute song called “BomBom”, full with dramatic rises and falls that has the listener feeling like he’s in a musical storm at sea.

The Teaching, who were recommended to the Platinum-selling hip-hop duo by friend and fellow musician, trumpeter Owuor Arunga, are comprised of Evan Flory-Barnes (upright bass), Josh Rawlings (keys) and Jeremy Jones (drums). The group has been a mainstay in the Seattle jazz scene for years – and the band’s upcoming show with rapper Spekulation, slated for June 19th at the Royal Room, promises to be one of their most anticipated performances to date.

Although Rawlings will not be available for the gig, as he’s currently on tour with singer Allen Stone, the show will feature a replacement keys player that, says Flory-Barnes, will “be connected to the scene.” In addition to The Teaching, members of the Seattle Rock Orchestra will be playing the 90-minte gig, which, according to Spek, has been “years in the making.”

When Spekulation (aka Matt Watson, aka The Bitter Barista) first moved to Seattle some number of years ago, he happened upon the local venue Lo Fi and The Teaching’s open mic night there, affectionately called, “The Hang.” It was then he fell in love with the group.

“The Hang,” said Spek, “was the impetus for me to start experimenting with mixing samples from Seattle musicians like The Teaching. We’ve been releasing EP’s under the radar for some time and this is our first opportunity to come together and bring those songs to a live audience.”

Flory-Barnes, who is also featured on the cover of this month’s City Arts magazine, agrees with Spek. “When The Hang started, it was about creating an environment where artists of all kinds, not just rappers, not just jazz musicians, could express themselves,” he said. “We’ve continued that tradition some six years later and this concert is an extension and culmination of that.”

Flory-Barnes added, “Hip-hop is integrated within most languages in the world nowadays. The June 19th performance is going to reflect the beautiful connections within this musical community.”

Tickets for the performance, which begins at 8PM and is all ages until 10PM, can be found here.

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