Lynguistic Civilians Perform BHW Benefit This Wednesday!
Words by Sarah Frazier.
On Wednesday, December 21st, Big Heavy World and The Radiator are celebrating the season with a benefit show at Club Metronome. Guaranteed to be an awesome showing with a lineup that includes: Funkwagon, Lynguistic Civilians, Aaron Flinn's Salad Days, Kelly & Justin from Waylon Speed, Kat Wright & The Indomitable Soul Band and many more. I got a chance to talk to the Lynguistic Civilians about the benefit show and their own developing sound.
Lynguistic Civilians first got involved with Big Heavy in November when the band needed transportation to a gig in Boston. Hearing about the community driven, music supporting organization the group got in contact and borrowed the Big Heavy World van. The band recognized the contribution that BHW makes to the Vermont music community and jumped on the chance to help them out by becoming part of the line-up for the Big Heavy World Benefit Show, “With meeting Jim and hearing about what BHW has to offer and what you do for the community and local artists we were more than excited to be a part of the event.” Seeing the potential in the Vermont music atmosphere the band sees Vermont as an avenue for their own creativity, as they tell me, “Originality is widely accepted here, you don’t get that too often.” Describing their sound as a mixture of reggae, soul and funk, the variation in their sound allows for a diverse range. However, as the group tells me, “at the end of the day for us it’s all about Hip Hop and having fun and our lyrics portray just that.”
Currently out with an E.P. entitled, “A Hard Act To Follow”, the band hopes to show their creative drive through a variety of tracks. In their song “Crazy Fools”, for instance, the band has a high-powered energy of a party atmosphere while still grabbing the listener’s attention lyrically. One track in particular the band is proud of is “Good Enough” which lyrics display, “how popular music today is just factory made and isn’t good enough for us.” The group tells me that the track in particular shows the range they are trying to achieve.. Speaking towards their own lyrical inspiration, the group often participates in a collaborative effort in the writing process with each emcee making their own contribution. From there, their own MC/Beat Maker Monty Burns (cool-ass name by the way) acts as producer for the collaboration. I was impressed by how much a group effort the band strains the creative process to be. As they tell me, “Whether it’s the concept for the song or the way we sing the hook, it’s a completely collaborative effort.” It is this creative joint process that allows for the various sounds the band is trying to achieve.
Individually, the band’s musical hearts are as various as their sound. For Mike Philly Fulton, it is a classical heart, with an appreciation towards R&B’s James Brown and Hip Hop’s Run DMC. From there you have Walshie Steeze’s love for live performance and funk, taking inspiration from such bands as The Roots. LC takes to heart the mentality of “keeping it real”, with a combination of soul, funk and jazz, seeing the skill of those such as Etta James and George Clinton. DJ BP is about the bass and noise, and the vibrations that shake our anatomy, seeing light in Jurassic 5 and A Tribe Called Quest. Dan Noonan sees authenticity in the works of Questlove and J Dilla – truth is inspiration. Monty Burns sees life as the musical heart, music involved in his everyday include The Band and De La Soul. And finally, T-Noonz is the heart of absolute funk and gives praise to Parliament Funkadelic. All come from different backgrounds and sounds which allow for unique and compelling diversity.
Of course, given all this diversity there are challenges like any close-knit group would have. Keeping the sanity is only achievable by remembering the message that music is the purpose and comes before ego and recognition: “We have had our struggles with members and money and everything there is with being a family. Throughout it all we can say patience and communication is key, but to never lose the love of making the music. If you lose that, then it’s pointless.” Come see the Lynguistic Civilians at the BHW Benefit Show on December 21nd!