THE BRENCORE ALLSTARS BAND is a tremendously talented 10 to 14 Piece Band from Washington, DC that features some of the best musicians and vocalists that brings a depth, richness and appreciation of music to all audiences.
The BRENCORE ALLSTARS Band provides a variety and range of songs performed in a series of medleys and powerhouse songs will have you singing and dancing to your favorite songs all night long. The BRENCORE ALLSTARS Band has performed many Tributes and has sold out many venues such as The Historic Howard Theatre, The Carlyle Club, The Roanoke Rapids Theatre, The Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club, The Hylton Performing Arts Center and the Bowie Center For the Performing Arts with plans to showcase the musical genius of the BRENCORE ALLSTARS in many more locales.
The delivery, the energy and the powerful voices of the BRENCORE ALLSTARS Band never disappoints. Diverse audiences from 300 miles in any direction around and near Washington, DC area have snapped their fingers, tapped their toes and been musically transported to a time when the music of the some of the greatest artists graced the stage and wooed audiences across the globe!
John Milton Wesley is an author and “singer songwriter” although he is better known for his published prose and poetry. He moved to Columbia, MD in 1973 from Mississippi to pursue a career in marketing and media. He was first published in the Columbia Flier newspaper in 1974.
Since then, his work has been published in nine prose and poetry anthologies in the U.S. and abroad, translated into Spanish, and Arabic, and his music is now played in countries around the world. He has remained on the :www.ReverbNation.com “Top 20” performers list in the DC, Maryland, and Virginia area for the past four years. He writes, arranges and performs all of his own music.
His “by-line” is also familiar to readers of Essence Magazine, or the Washington Post, the Baltimore Sun, the Afro–American Newspapers, and across social media where he blogs via The Huffington Post, and on WordPress.com. However, Wesley’s greatest passion has remained in his music since it began in church and the school choir in his hometown of Ruleville, MS. There he first learned to play on an old piano in his grandmothers “front room”. Following her death in 1963, Wesley moved to Jackson, MS where he met and worked with a budding group of young singers and song writers in a little studio that eventually became Malaco Studios.
Wesley’s “breakout” musical performance occurred at Merriweather Post Pavilion in 2008 for the 40th Birthday anniversary celebration of his adopted hometown Columbia, MD. That same year he was invited to perform his “spoken word” during the annual meeting of the National Association of Black Journalist (NABJ) convention in Las Vegas, and later at The Bowery Poetry Project in New York. Other venues for his work include Stanford University, The College of Notre Dame, Ursinus College, in Collegeville, PA, Singers in Baltimore, Annie’s Place, Temple Hills Maryland where he opened for Nigerian Soul Singer “Kuku,” and on National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered”, and on April 20, 2012 he opened for comedian “Sinbad” in Baltimore at the Marriott Inner Harbor East Hotel. In June of 2012 he performed with poet Nikki Giovanni in a special salute to Maryland Poet Laureate.
National Recording Artist Kevin Howard is a world class keyboardist, writer, Composer and Producer. Born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and now residing in Maryland.
In 2018, Kevin was honored as Jazz Artist of the Year by the Pennsylvania House of Representatives which he was recognized on the floor of the in Harrisburg, PA. and recieved a citation in his honor. In addition, Kevin has received several awards which includes three “Best Jazz Performer Awards” from renowned local urban radio stations WAMO, the WQED Harry Schwab Excellence in the Arts Award, Best Jazz Performers Champions Association, Pittsburgh City Paper as a Top 3 Jazz Performer. Kevin and his band served as Pittsburgh’s WJJJ Smooth Jazz Band for several years performing on many events sponsored by various radio stations.
Kevin recently toured with and was the musical director for Jazz Saxophonist Legend Ronnie Laws and also recorded and performed with Marion Meadows, Norman Connors, Lonnie Liston Smith, NAJEE and George Benson. In addition he has shared the stage with many National Artists such as Jonathan Butler, Cameo, Roy Ayers, Pieces of a Dream, Joe McBride and John Legend.
Kevin has also performed on numerous festivals and supper clubs around the world. Kevin has 4 CDs that includes many great artists.
In 1993 Gilchrist formed the New Volcanoes, as a quartet that also contained trumpeter Freddie Dunn, bassist Vince Loving, and drummer Nate Reynolds. Trumpeter and sound engineer Mike Cerri was soon added, and Gilchrist recorded his first album, The Art Is Life, as a sextet with James Dephilipo added on euphonium. This was self-released, as was Gilchrist’s second album, Asphalt Revolt. He played with the New Volcanoes and gave solo performances on the East Coast for several years after graduating.
He first met Murray in 1999: Gilchrist introduced himself and later sent the saxophonist a recording of his playing. They played together a few weeks later, and the pianist joined Murray’s band after a few more weeks had passed. Their first gig together was at the Iridium Jazz Club in New York City in April 2000. Gilchrist subsequently obtained a recording contract with Hyena Records, but decided to remain in Baltimore, based on his belief that New York-based musicians tend to converge on a particular style of playing.
Gilchrist gradually built the sound of the New Volcanoes by adding particular musicians on different instruments, particularly Gabriel Ware on alto saxophone and Greg Thompkins on tenor. The latter commented that the pianist “does look at the horn section as a choir, […] But it’s a choir where anyone can get the spirit and take off”. The first release of original material on Hyena was 2005’s Towards the Shining Path, which received little attention, as Gilchrist did not have enough money to pay for the whole band to tour. To develop his reputation and capacity to tour, Gilchrist formed a more commercially viable band, a trio, with Anthony “Blue” Jenkins on bass and Reynolds on drums; they created the album Three.
Gilchrist’s 2008 New Volcanoes album Soul Progressin’ received a four-star review from Down Beat, which commented that “Gilchrist’s sanguine melodies, vulnerable and gospelized, distinguish the music from M-Base‘s cool austerity.” A 2012 recording of the same group also contained a mix of styles: one reviewer described one track from It Came from Baltimore: Live at the Windup Space Vol. 1 as containing elements of “Pop and the avant-garde, old and new, free-jazz and funk, hip-hop and rock, modernist dissonance and sentimental grooves”. Gilchrist also leads a trio called Inside Out, with Michael Formanek (bass) and Eric Kennedy (drums). Gilchrist’s New Urban World Blues was a musical re-telling of the 2015 Baltimore uprising that began with the death of a young African American man and is chronicled in the song “Blues for Freddie Gray”. A 4-volume set titled Compendium was released on Manta Ray Records in 2017.
His composition “Assume the Position” was used in the score for the HBO drama television series The Wire. His compositions have also been used in the HBO series Treme and The Deuce.
Tamm E. Hunt has been an important force in the Baltimore jazz community, both as a singer and behind the scenes. She is the niece of jazz and blues singer Hannah Sylvester and Benny Clark (who owned a record company), and the daughter of K.D. Searcy, a tap dancer who danced at the Apollo Theater with Tip Tap & Toe. She grew up around music and, after hearing Dakota Staton‘s “The Late Late Show,” she knew early on that she wanted to sing jazz. Despite that, Hunt started out singing other styles of music. In her childhood she sang with a variety of R&B girl groups. She had some commercial success in the early ’80s singing disco, but then switched to jazz. Inspired by Betty Carter, Sarah Vaughan, and pianist Dorothy Donegan, Hunt sang with such notables as altoist Gary Bartz, tenor saxophonist Clifford Jordan, pianists Ronnie Matthews and Larry Willis, bassist Buster Williams, and drummer T.S. Monk, among others. She has performed throughout the U.S. in addition to Europe, Canada, and Japan. Hunt has thus far recorded one CD, Live @ Birdland, for her New Jazz Audience label. Hunt also founded the Harlem Jazz Foundation, and has written jazz education programs including Adopt a Kid 4 Jazz and Jazz 4 the Beginner. She starred and produced in the off-Broadway show Billie Holiday: The Legend, and appeared in a short dramatic film with Gary Bartz called A Jazz Story. In Baltimore, she has been the executive/artistic director of the Maryland Center for the Preservation of Jazz & Blues.
Gregory “Sugar Bear” Elliott is a globally known recording artist, frontman, lead vocalist, and bass player with 3 billboard hits including the “Da Butt” which peaked at #1 on the US Billboard Hot Black Singles in 1988 and was also a featured performance in Spike Lee’s film “School Daze”. Also, to his credit, his group Experience Unlimited aka E.U. was not only an opening act for the commencement ceremony for the 2016 opening of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture but they also have an exhibit on the third floor of the museum.
Born in Red Springs, North Carolina, Gregory’s mother Ms. Ernestine Elliott moved her family to Washington, DC when he was only 2 years old and eventually settled into the Valley Green neighborhood of Southeast. Ms. Elliott raised her children with strong Christian values and kept them in church and school. Gregory was drawn to music at an early age and would often make bass guitar sounds with his mouth and bang on desktops. His mother noticed his love for music and bought him a six-string guitar when he was 13 but Gregory was drawn to the bassline of it and tried to play bass. Self-taught, he learned to play bass by watching musicians on TV. One song, in particular, he played every day was “Tighten Up” by Archie Bell & The Drells. He continued to listen to other artist such as James Brown and Kool & The Gang and practiced, practiced, practiced until he got better at it and had learned to play more songs. He also started listening to different genres of music and discovered a love for Rock and Roll. It was also around this time when Gregory adopted the name “Sugar Bear” – given to him by Ms. Ethel Knight, his afterschool caretaker. He would always be eating Sugar Crisps cereal with “Sugar Bear” the bear on the front of the box to the point that Ms. Knight told Gregory that he started looking like the bear on the box. From then on… Gregory became known as “Sugar Bear”.
Sugar Bear attended Ballou High School in Southeast DC where he played football and he boxed but according to him, “it wasn’t my calling.” All of the guys who played football and basketball had all of the girls and since sports wasn’t his calling, Sugar Bear got together with a group of musicians and put together a band named The Rebels. Ballou had talent shows and that was the perfect opportunity for The Rebels to showcase their skills and they won for best new group. (The band’s name changed from The Rebels to The Young Hustlers to Experience Unlimited (E.U.) – inspired by The Jimi Hendrix Experience “Are You Experienced”.) That was the beginning of E.U. After the talent show, they had the opportunity to open up for the legendary Chuck Brown & The Soul Searchers at the Panorama Room in Southeast Washington, DC – it was the largest crowd that the band had played before at that time. “People liked us, but they wouldn’t dance so Chuck Brown pulled me to the side and said ‘Son, you have a lot of great talent, but you have to play what the people want to hear’. We stayed around and watched the set and I was amazed at the call and response! The whole place was jumping for two hours straight and that day, I learned what the Go-Go music scene was all about.” said Sugar Bear. That following Monday, E.U. rehearsed and changed their entire format to a Go-Go style.
Sugar Bear had become popular but liked to play the background, sitting in the back playing his bass. It took a friend of his, another Go-Go legend Little Benny, to tell Sugar Bear ‘You have to come up front, people want to see you Bear. Everybody came out to see YOU, I can show you how to do this.’ Little Benny showed Sugar Bear some inside tricks of the game, call and responses, and some steps, and from there… Sugar Bear and E.U. took off!
In 1988, one song took E.U. from a local band to a globally known name that is STILL relevant today – Da Butt. That blessing has afforded Sugar Bear the opportunity to still perform concerts, festivals, nightclubs, and private events and is starting back up as the pandemic restrictions are lifting. He has collaborated with Salt-N-Pepa on “Shake Your Thang” and has shared the stage with countless stars. In 2019, during the #DontMuteDC campaign, DC native and movie star Regina Hall was the host of the 2019 BET Awards and brought out Sugar Bear & E.U. as well as Rare Essence to perform. Most recently during the 93rd Academy Awards, actress Glenn Close shouted out Sugar Bear and danced to the song “Da Butt.” Sugar Bear was blown away by the mention and was quoted saying, “I had butterflies all throughout my body. I was overwhelmed. I started thanking God, like, ‘Wow, this is large.’” Glenn Close is not the only celebrity to acknowledge Sugar Bear & E.U. – Fantasia, Jill Scott and CeeLo Green at the 2020 Soul Train Awards have also performed medleys of “Da Butt” during their shows.
Faycez U Know Music Group /Kainaia.Ent are a unit of producers, song writers, arrangers, composers & studio engineers,
Faycez U Know Band is an American Soul and Funk band from the Washington, DC Metropolitan (DMV) area with the drive of the DC “Go-Go” swing. They have the showman ship vastly compared to the likes of the Rolling Stones, and the versatility of a Parliament Party…
The group is blessed with musicians who are determined to provide the entertainment of the old school showstoppers while carrying the modern sound of music. The groups quintessential soul singer (Halima Peru) hails from Miami, Florida and so does her raw sound, sun kissed voice and the feet that are sure to roam the stage and crowd.
The sultry voiced male singer (Keenen (KO) Ivor) delivers satisfaction faster than a speeding bullet. That grand sound of the bass guitar comes from no other than Kenneth “Doc” Hughes. Anthony “Tom Tom” Talley & Dennis Garland JR adds that powerful keyboard fire and creativity to the stage while Dave Gussom adds that amazing rhythm and lead guitar to give the music that smooth silky sound. The phenomenal percussion section is led by William (Keemy) Slade on drums, Craig “Clip” Clipper.
On a quest to constantly bring you a sound to make you move to the music, it’s no wonder they are growing so swiftly in popularity. Their presentation is just what the doctor ordered to sooth and lift your spirits. After all, music is medicine for the soul and they intend to medicate properly.
The Faycez-U-Know music group has performed with and backed many local and national recording artist such as rappers Beanie Seagul and Method Man, R&B artist Carl Thomas, R Kelly, Fantasia, Chuck Brown, Raheem Devaughn, Jaguare Wright and Marsha Ambrosius just to name a few.
This is definitely an experience to witness live because if you blink you will miss something.