Reverend Chris & his Quintet

Reverend Chris & his Quintet

 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
BandJazzBlues Rock

This five piece band has been entertaining audiences in and around the Tri-State area since 2011. Originally started to musically embrace obscure Prohibition Era novelty songs, their music has organically grown to mostly original music in addition of a few select old favorites. Their sound is equally at home in jazz clubs, blues juke joints as well as private/corporate events. Their most recent album, @ETUDE, has been awarded 4/5 stars by AllAboutJazz and 5/5 by Amazon users and RollingStone.

Biography

Christopher Michael Marsceill (aka Rev Chris) was born in Boston and raised in Philadelphia where he studied Jazz at Settlement Music School under Denise Bruckno.  While attending Springfield Township High School he took lessons with Philly legend Eric Speigel while also learning the trumpet.  After high school he moved to New Orleans where he attended Loyola University and University of New Orleans.  He honed his piano skills gigging around the Crescent City.  He spent two years performing with singer Ellen Rogers and her trio every Sunday night at the Maple Leaf Bar where he met Joe Krown and began subbing for Joe at the "New Orleans Traditional Piano Night", first at the Maple Leaf then down Magazine Street at Le Bon Temps.  This Piano Night dates back to when James Booker first performed solo at the Maple Leaf.  Along with Krown, Booker and Rev Chris pianist Jon Cleary has also held down the Piano Night chair.

As a member of New Orleans funk/jam bands Brides of Jesus (featuring Russell Batiste of the funky Meters รข€‹and Ian Neville, son of Art), Juice and Restless Natives he toured throughout the South and got a chance to open for, or share the stage with: B.B. King, members of Widespread Panic, Ani Difranco, Walter "Wolfman" Washington, Derek Trucks, George Porters JR, Blueground Undergrass and many others.  When not touring he performed in modern improvised music with the Ted Hefko Quartet and the Bradford Truby Trio.  He appears on recording by both these bands and the funk band Restless Natives.

He relocated to Philadelphia following a decade in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina destroyed his home. He brought that Big Easy style of relaxed fonky jazz piano that has made so many other New Orleans keyboardists extremely popular.  He has performed in and around Philly as a solo, duo, trio or larger ensemble.  He held the keyboard chair in Roger Learnard Band, a popular bar band that performs originals and classic rock covers, 2006-2016.  He has a fusion band, the Courtesy Shuttle with Rich Curtis, bass; Davey Cope, guitar; and Tony Green, drums.

In 2012 Rev Chris had already been performing as a duo called "DRUMS N KEYS" with drummer Chuck Lindsey.  For a special outdoor festival event they put together a trio that focused on performing "Reefer Songs" of the 1920s.  They had a few successful gigs and added Richard Redding on bari, soprano, tenor sax and recorder.  This formation recorded  "Viper Mad" that mixed a few originals and solo piano boogies in with the quartet's music.  In fall of 2014 trumpeter Bart Miltenberger joined the group and they released a Christmas themed record "Everybody's Waiting for the Man with the Bag".  In 2015 Richard Redding moved on and the band has been joined by Thomas Razler on sax and ventured into a new sound, while still throwing back to the fonky swing they came from.

In 2016 the Quintet recorded and released "@etude" - pronounced ATTITUTE - a collection of 12 songs.  Ten songs were written by Rev Chris and the other two were written by local Philadelphia based musicians who are friends of the band.  The album has received airplay on WRTI, WXPN, WPRB and WWOZ in addition to being played on satellite radio stations and on streaming services like Apple Music and Spotify.  Geno Thackara of AllAboutJazz.com reviewed the album and gave it four out of five stars.

Discography

@ETUDE [2016]
EVERYBODY'S WAITING FOR THE MAN WITH THE BAG [2014]
VIPER MAD [2013]
TRIO [2011]
FOOL ON THE HILL [2010]
SOME SONGS VOL. 1 [2009]
WHAT IS SUCCESS? [2008]

with Jason Fifield "CHRISTMAS ON THE AVENUE" [2008]

appeared on:

Davey Cope "A Proper Record" [2013]
Mighty Rhythm Kings "Lucky Girl" [2009]
Billy Iuso "Restless Native" [2004]
Bradford Truby Trio [2004]
Ted Hefko Quartet "Live at the Blue Nile" [2003]