Rogue Sound
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Rogue Sound

Boulder, Colorado, United States | SELF

Boulder, Colorado, United States | SELF
Band Hip Hop Reggae

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There was a time when college bands were real bands with real instruments. It’s hard to believe if you live on the Hill and see DJs every weekend, but things used to be done sans laptop and it was awesome, better, back when the most expensive drum machines sounded the most like a real drummer; lately, the exact reverse is ideal, and drummers work hard to sound just like drum machines.


Rogue Sound is a band that wants to do it all. They’ve definitely given it a try over the last 10 years of collaboration — performing at more than 25 bars and venues across the Front Range, and with more than 20 appearances at the Fox already, the collective has had a lot of opportunity to give some new things a try.

On Sept. 16, opening for hip-hop experts Zion I, they are more than ready to show the Fox that rhymes can be delivered with real instruments. That merengue can be pretty fly dance music. That bossa nova and reggae dub fit pretty tight together. That a whole lot of Rogue Sound things could happen.

Drummer Matt Smart and guitarist Mingus Fine formed Rogue Sound in 2000 and waded through lineups and style trials until a strong ska and reggae rhythmic backbone emerged. Things got more serious in 2004 when Smart and Fine recruited regular help on horns from Andrew McNew. Now that new “core” members Otis Lande on bass and Tonie G on vocals are tightening all the knots, Rogue Sound has evolved into a hiphop collaboration that never has been, and likely will never be, defined by any single group member or artistic vision.

Boulder is a small town, and swimming in a small pond has taught the members something about keeping it fresh. Guest musicians can sometimes run the number of on-stage performers up to eight or 10 — it all depends on who’s around.

They recently played a show at the Boulder Draft House and recruited a somewhat spontaneous horn and drum section for the gig. And despite the sudden collaboration, the band fit right in on the dance floor next to the DJ, Red Lion.

“We have lived in the same town playing this music for 10 years,” Smart says, “and the only way that we can keep doing that is to switch it up over and over and over and over. That’s probably why we have such a big sound, always just involving so many different musicians. You can’t just have the same songs and expect people to keep coming back.”

That’s the beauty of hip-hop. You can sample pretty much anything, and as long as the drum thumps and the bass blasts, you’ll have a full dance floor.

Rogue Sound describes itself as somewhat bilingual. Either from the years that Smart spent living in Mexico or the proficient lyricism of Tonie G, the band has a taste for musical styles south of the border. It’s not uncommon for a band with roots in reggae and ska (or hip-hop, really), but Rogue Sound is really not afraid of it. Kumbia, merengue, banda, Mexican ranchera music, todo está bien.

The upcoming show at the Fox will showcase Rogue Sound in its element, and it also presents a chance to show what they can do after a decade of cutting their teeth in bars all over Colorado. They have opened for diverse, international acts such as Kool Keith, Eek-a-Mouse, Granola Funk Express and the Rebirth Brass Band, and with a variable, capable sound to support any of the above acts, Rogue Sound is more than able to compete with Zion I’s intelligent production and positive vibrations.

For Fine, “It’s actually meaningful because Zion I is like growing — they’re getting huge — and it’s positive hip-hop.

“Good music,” Fine continues, “means good dancing, good dancing means good loving, and everybody needs some good, sweet loving.”

On the Bill
Rogue Sound opens for Zion I at the Fox Theatre on Thursday, Sept. 16. Doors at 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $20. 1135 13th St., Boulder, 303-443-3399

Respond: letters@boulderweekly.com - P.J. Nutting at The Boulder Weekly


There was a time when college bands were real bands with real instruments. It’s hard to believe if you live on the Hill and see DJs every weekend, but things used to be done sans laptop and it was awesome, better, back when the most expensive drum machines sounded the most like a real drummer; lately, the exact reverse is ideal, and drummers work hard to sound just like drum machines.


Rogue Sound is a band that wants to do it all. They’ve definitely given it a try over the last 10 years of collaboration — performing at more than 25 bars and venues across the Front Range, and with more than 20 appearances at the Fox already, the collective has had a lot of opportunity to give some new things a try.

On Sept. 16, opening for hip-hop experts Zion I, they are more than ready to show the Fox that rhymes can be delivered with real instruments. That merengue can be pretty fly dance music. That bossa nova and reggae dub fit pretty tight together. That a whole lot of Rogue Sound things could happen.

Drummer Matt Smart and guitarist Mingus Fine formed Rogue Sound in 2000 and waded through lineups and style trials until a strong ska and reggae rhythmic backbone emerged. Things got more serious in 2004 when Smart and Fine recruited regular help on horns from Andrew McNew. Now that new “core” members Otis Lande on bass and Tonie G on vocals are tightening all the knots, Rogue Sound has evolved into a hiphop collaboration that never has been, and likely will never be, defined by any single group member or artistic vision.

Boulder is a small town, and swimming in a small pond has taught the members something about keeping it fresh. Guest musicians can sometimes run the number of on-stage performers up to eight or 10 — it all depends on who’s around.

They recently played a show at the Boulder Draft House and recruited a somewhat spontaneous horn and drum section for the gig. And despite the sudden collaboration, the band fit right in on the dance floor next to the DJ, Red Lion.

“We have lived in the same town playing this music for 10 years,” Smart says, “and the only way that we can keep doing that is to switch it up over and over and over and over. That’s probably why we have such a big sound, always just involving so many different musicians. You can’t just have the same songs and expect people to keep coming back.”

That’s the beauty of hip-hop. You can sample pretty much anything, and as long as the drum thumps and the bass blasts, you’ll have a full dance floor.

Rogue Sound describes itself as somewhat bilingual. Either from the years that Smart spent living in Mexico or the proficient lyricism of Tonie G, the band has a taste for musical styles south of the border. It’s not uncommon for a band with roots in reggae and ska (or hip-hop, really), but Rogue Sound is really not afraid of it. Kumbia, merengue, banda, Mexican ranchera music, todo está bien.

The upcoming show at the Fox will showcase Rogue Sound in its element, and it also presents a chance to show what they can do after a decade of cutting their teeth in bars all over Colorado. They have opened for diverse, international acts such as Kool Keith, Eek-a-Mouse, Granola Funk Express and the Rebirth Brass Band, and with a variable, capable sound to support any of the above acts, Rogue Sound is more than able to compete with Zion I’s intelligent production and positive vibrations.

For Fine, “It’s actually meaningful because Zion I is like growing — they’re getting huge — and it’s positive hip-hop.

“Good music,” Fine continues, “means good dancing, good dancing means good loving, and everybody needs some good, sweet loving.”

On the Bill
Rogue Sound opens for Zion I at the Fox Theatre on Thursday, Sept. 16. Doors at 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $20. 1135 13th St., Boulder, 303-443-3399

Respond: letters@boulderweekly.com - P.J. Nutting at The Boulder Weekly


Rogue Sound likes to blend musical genres, and the Boulder outfit cranks out a very danceable mix of hip-hop, reggae and funk grooves.

The local group's stepped up its line-up and its career plan. Plus, Rogue Sound just released its new album, U.N.O.

Rogue Sound's on a mission to show off its new music, so the band's playing two show this week. Thursday, the multi-genre group hits Conor O'Neill's. Then, Rogue Sound plays the Dark Horse on Saturday.

Mingus Fine plays guitar and sings for Rogue Sound, and he chatted with the Daily about his band.

Q: Rogue Sound's been together for awhile, how did the band revamp itself with a new line-up?

A: Rogue Sound has been together in one form or another since 2000.

Now we have a new front guy, Tonie G. He has a strong, youthful vibe and he adds a lot of energy to the band. This the most solid, progressive version of Rogue Sound.

We also have Otis Lande playing bass with us -- he's the son of musician Art Lande.

Art's been a major education to us and he has a guest spot on the new album.

Q: What's the premise behind Rogue Sound's interesting fusion of genres?

A: We're a live reggae fusion band that plays reggae, hip-hop, fusion and jazz.

We could have one song with all these elements mixed in. It's a pretty good mix. We have the freedom to add all these genres to the music.

It's all about having a good dance beat and creating a positive party atmosphere.

Q: What sets Rogue Sound apart from other bands?

A: We look at the song form as a map. We could have a three-minute pop song, but for us that's a vehicle for improvising live.

In our live shows, we run the songs together and that keeps the genre style fresh.

We definitely have room for improvisation and freestyle rap.

Q: Tell us something about the band's new CD, U.N.O?

A: It took us two years to make the CD. We battled with money issues, so we picked away at it. That helped us evolve as a band.

This new CD is a great road trip record. It covers a lot of ground -- there's dance songs, songs you can kick back to and some fun, humorous songs.

We also had a lot of guest artists on the record.

Q: How has the band's grassroots efforts propelled Rogue Sound?

A: We've done quite a few national openers. We've opened for Eek-A-Mouse, Guru, Groundation and Ozomatli -- that was the highlight of my life!

Right now our biggest goal is to play outside Colorado. We're getting lots of leads on the tour circuit.

We're really grassroots and we book our own shows. We print our own albums and posters, and we hit the streets and pass out flyers.

We're also doing a lot on Facebook. The snowball effect is amazing! - Wendy Kale at The Colorado Daily 2011


Rogue Sound likes to blend musical genres, and the Boulder outfit cranks out a very danceable mix of hip-hop, reggae and funk grooves.

The local group's stepped up its line-up and its career plan. Plus, Rogue Sound just released its new album, U.N.O.

Rogue Sound's on a mission to show off its new music, so the band's playing two show this week. Thursday, the multi-genre group hits Conor O'Neill's. Then, Rogue Sound plays the Dark Horse on Saturday.

Mingus Fine plays guitar and sings for Rogue Sound, and he chatted with the Daily about his band.

Q: Rogue Sound's been together for awhile, how did the band revamp itself with a new line-up?

A: Rogue Sound has been together in one form or another since 2000.

Now we have a new front guy, Tonie G. He has a strong, youthful vibe and he adds a lot of energy to the band. This the most solid, progressive version of Rogue Sound.

We also have Otis Lande playing bass with us -- he's the son of musician Art Lande.

Art's been a major education to us and he has a guest spot on the new album.

Q: What's the premise behind Rogue Sound's interesting fusion of genres?

A: We're a live reggae fusion band that plays reggae, hip-hop, fusion and jazz.

We could have one song with all these elements mixed in. It's a pretty good mix. We have the freedom to add all these genres to the music.

It's all about having a good dance beat and creating a positive party atmosphere.

Q: What sets Rogue Sound apart from other bands?

A: We look at the song form as a map. We could have a three-minute pop song, but for us that's a vehicle for improvising live.

In our live shows, we run the songs together and that keeps the genre style fresh.

We definitely have room for improvisation and freestyle rap.

Q: Tell us something about the band's new CD, U.N.O?

A: It took us two years to make the CD. We battled with money issues, so we picked away at it. That helped us evolve as a band.

This new CD is a great road trip record. It covers a lot of ground -- there's dance songs, songs you can kick back to and some fun, humorous songs.

We also had a lot of guest artists on the record.

Q: How has the band's grassroots efforts propelled Rogue Sound?

A: We've done quite a few national openers. We've opened for Eek-A-Mouse, Guru, Groundation and Ozomatli -- that was the highlight of my life!

Right now our biggest goal is to play outside Colorado. We're getting lots of leads on the tour circuit.

We're really grassroots and we book our own shows. We print our own albums and posters, and we hit the streets and pass out flyers.

We're also doing a lot on Facebook. The snowball effect is amazing! - Wendy Kale at The Colorado Daily 2011


Discography

2006 "Rogue Sound"-Rogue Sound
2008 "Smoking Pieces"-Rogue Sound
2009 "Best of The Fox Theatre"-Rogue Sound
2011 "U.N.O."-Rogue Sound

Photos

Bio

Rogue Sound is a Live-Band-Hip-Hop-Reggae-Fusion group out of Boulder, Colorado. Founded in 2000 by long time partners in crime, drummer/singer, Matt Smart and guitarist, Mingus Fine; Rogue Sound strives to cross cultures and genres while mixing musicianship with simplicity in a positive party atmosphere. This philosophy has brought Rogue Sound to many different stages across Colorado, such as The Fox Theatre (over 30x now), to perform with Legends not only of Hip-hop and Reggae; but also of Rock, Funk and Jazz; Guru, The Itals, Jimmy Herring, Ozomatli, and Zion I, just to name a few. Rapper Antonio “Tonie G” Puller, with his rapid fire lyrical style, joined the group in 2010 with the release of the album U.N.O. and quickly became a force on stage. The additions this year of bassist, Rob Garland and keyboardist, Sean Harper have added to the arsenal of this seasoned band and rejuvenated the groups spirit and readied them to rock venues across the globe. For more information or to book Rogue Sound in your area please send an e-mail to roguesound@gmail.com or go see them live and say “Heeey”.

ROGUE: noun. 1. One who is innocently mischievous or playful… 2. In biology, a variation from a standard.

SOUND: adj. 1. Founded in truth; right; substantial; valid…2. Solid; stable; firm; safe; hence trustworthy.