Northern Shakedown
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Northern Shakedown

Seattle, Washington, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2011 | SELF

Seattle, Washington, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2011
Band Alternative Hip Hop




"100 Bands in 100 Days Presented by Verity Credit Union — Day 32: Northern Shakedown"

Today we’re bringing our hundred-day odyssey to the vast sea of Seattle music, to explore the creative output of one of the local rock scene’s hardest-working and most standout groups, Northern Shakedown!

The genre-defying alt-rockers in Northern Shakedown formed the project in the midst of 2011, with its four core members having known each other for over 10 years prior. Just one short year later, the then trio dropped their first official single, “Through the Night,” a down-and-dirty rock track that really forecast the band as one that wasn’t playing around, with the song’s groovy guitar leads, dance music-influenced live drum beats, and passionate vocals, which are treated with a distortion effect just subtle enough to give the track an extra layer of grittiness.

While both this single and the Rural Nyce EP that followed it up later that year were very solid releases for the band, it wouldn’t be until Jabreel Stewart’s addition to the band in 2013 that the group’s sound would be redefined, and help them stand out even more among the pack of Seattle rockers. Early releases felt like pretty straightforward, in-your-face alternative and indie rock with a strong emphasis on groove and rhythm, but Jabreel’s rapped vocals added a strong alternative hip-hop and rap-rock vibe to the band’s sound, without going too overboard with the stylistic infusion.

Northern Shakedown’s approach to combining hip-hop and rock music isn’t quite as saccharine as someone like Everlast, and their sound isn’t quite as abstract and heady as a project like Why?, but their mixture of alternative rock guitars with hip-hop-inspired drum beats and rapping is executed tastefully and with a lot of passion and sincerity when it comes to merging these two worlds. “Soda” was the first track to feature their newest member, who largely dominates the blues rock-influenced track with his relentless flow and lyrics about trying to get to know a woman the narrator knows better. The band’s rhythm section provides an excellent, infectious groove for Jabreel Stewart to ride like the back of his hand.

The latter half of 2014 saw the band expanding their newfound signature sound with two new singles, “Supertramp” and “Mona Lisa,” the former being an entirely sung piece of blues rock that showed off the band’s love of not only classic rock, but also soul music, and the latter track being another rock-hop jam where the quartet really doubled down on their traditional R&B influence that’s always flowed through the blood of Northern Shakedown. While Northern Shakedown has been relatively silent on the studio side of things for the past two years or so, the band is currently in the post-production phase of a brand new six-song EP, projected for an early 2017 release, which was the result of the band working with producer Bubba Jones, most notable for working with Ishmael Butler in his two most acclaimed projects, Shabazz Palaces and Digable Planets.

Through their upcoming EP, the band hopes to show off just how much they’ve grown and matured as not only individual people, but as a band, since their latest release in October 2014. We’re expecting big things to come from this project when the calendar strikes 2017.

Until then, you can follow Northern Shakedown on Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud, and Tumblr, and find their music available for streaming or purchase (most of it available via a name-your-price business model) through Watch the music video for “Soda,” directed by Kevin Kalb, below via YouTube. - Northwest Music Scene

""Soulful and Satisfying""

“Northern Shakedown is one of the more soulful and satisfying Seattle bands to watch in 2016.” - Davin Michael Stedman: Band In Seattle Music Supervisor - High Dive (Venue - Seattle, WA)

"Soniphone Records Showcases Fresh, Raw Talent"

Northern Shakedown started things off with a groovy R&B hip-hop vibe, bringing to mind Jamiroquai’s biggest hit, “Virtual Insanity.” - Seattle Music Insider - Christine Mitchell

"INSIDE OUT: Jammin’ Challenge winner brings judges to their feet!"

"The crowd was with them from the start. The band blends influences from R&B and classic rock to hip/hop and post-rock.... They’ve been playing some pretty sweet lineups." - Seattle Music Insider


2014 - Mona Lisa (Single)
2014 - Supertramp (single)
2014 - Soda (single)
2012 - Rural Nyce EP
2012 - Through The Night (single)



Northern Shakedown is a band that represents a true sense of Brotherhood. It is a bond that inspires even the most callous observer to remember that music is still our greatest hope for breaking down boundaries and pulling us together. Northern Shakedown is a reminder that Rock & Roll may still yet have a few more little tricks up its sleeve.

The band originated, like many of the greatest bands on the famed Chitlin' Circuit that gave birth to Soul, after it sprang from the Church. Like many of those artists, their individual worldviews and politics have evolved upon greater exposure to all things secular. But musically it was a rich experience.

Like Sam Cooke and Bobby Womack, this is where all four members first wrote songs and played before their first big crowds. The church was the crucible in which these two sets of brothers, exposed each other to two different worlds that they have made co-exist through their bonds of friendship and mutual respect. There is a sense with a band that came from the structures and tenants of the Pentecostal church, that outside of those walls anything is possible. The time they did has done their sound a great justice.

And they have emerged as quite decent human beings with songs that are worth enjoying up in the club or on your home hi-fi stereo system.

Band Members