Steve Kaul - The Brass Kings
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Steve Kaul - The Brass Kings

Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States | INDIE

Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States | INDIE
Band Americana Singer/Songwriter


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Sing Out"

Steve Kaul's propulsive guitar work drives his songs forward on Utah Sun, laying down the perfect backdrop for stories about broken-down cars ("Dynaflow") and the open road ("Travelin' Through"). Kaul has a knack for decorating his original songs with the right blues or folk lick, and for making simple arrangements sound full--one man, one guitar. A nice, down-to-earth folk effort. - Spring 2005 Issue

"Radio Centraal - Belgium"

The guitar style (Acoustic Guitar, Resophonic Guitar) shows a nice mixture of blues, mixed with influences of some American folk style traditions, finger-picking and flat-picking, played pretty past. Especially the fingerpicking with its traditional foundations was influenced by beside people like John Hurt, Reverend Gary Davis, by John Fahey and Leo Kottke, perhaps for it's arranged fast playing and inspiration of older styles into something fresh. Very good ! **** - Winter 2004

"International Guitar Seminar"

Equipped with only his voice and guitar, he delivers his songs with soul and dedication. All in all, I felt his songwriting is of a very high standard and his delivery as a vocalist as well as fingerpicking and flatpicking guitarist is top notch. - Fall 2004

"Pulse of the Twin Cities"

"One of the most unconventional old-timey stringbands in town, their ferocious, world-influenced rhythms take that old-timey sound down some unusual roads… they're not to be missed." - Cyn Collins - 2006

"The Onion"

"…the sound of a master fingerpicker on a resonator is still something special. Local guitarist Steve Kaul has a way with the instrument that should appeal to fans of Leo Kottke…" - Chris Bahn - 2006

"Rift Magazine"

"The back porch, stripped-down approach of the Brass Kings on their self-titled debut release is refreshing, comforting and a knee-slappin' good time." - Nelson Heise - 2006

"City Pages"

"Their first recording displays a disarming wit and charm reminiscent of the Front Porch Swingin’ Liquor Pigs…" - Paul Demko - 2006

"Minneapolis Star Tribune"

" exceptional picker…" - Chris Riemenscheider - 2006

"How Was The Show"

"Top-notch songwriting from metal-bodied resophonic guitar player Steve Kaul, and listenable, haunting songs with timeless lyrics make this an album you'll want to play again and again." - David de Young - 2006

"Pop Matters"

“I’ll forgive you for not realizing country blues could be comfortably married to Eastern music, because I never would’ve thought of that pairing either. Fortunately, the Brass Kings did…(they) conjure up a unique multicultural musical fusion, one that sounds like very little of what gets labeled “Americana”. And thank goodness for that.” - Pop Matters - 2006


The Brass Kings / Washboard Rope Guitar - 2008
Dream Horse Records DH0015 - 13 song Audio CD

The Brass Kings CD - 2006
Dream Horse Records DH0011 - 13 song Audio CD

Airplay on The Current, KAXE, KFAI
and university stations. Also great airplay in
Colorado, Kansas, Missiouri, Iowa, Idaho, Washington and California.

Steve Kaul - Utah Sun - Solo CD - 2004
Dream Horse Records DH0005 - 12 song CD
Radio Play on Acoustic Cafe, Whole Wheat Radio, Folkweb, Minnesota Public Radio, Wisconsin Public Radio, Kansas Public Radio, Utah Public Radio, KFAI Community Radio & Alaska Public Radio
Streaming on the website.

Voices in the Wilderness - Anti-War Compilation - 2001
3 CD Set - artists against the Iraq war
National airplay for original song "George Juts His Chin". Interviewed on nationally syndicated Pacifica Radio program - 2002.

The New Grass Heads- Lost Episodes - 1996
Dream Horse Records DH0001 - 12 song CD

Ghost Dance Deluxe - Mission Impossible - 1993
Channel 83 Records - 7" Red Vinyl Single



Minnesota State Fair, MN 2008
Rock Bend Folk Festival, MN 2008
Logjam Music Festival, MN 2008
Famous Dave's Blues Festival, MN 2008
Boats & Bluegrass Festival, MN 2008
Rhythm On The River Festival, MN 2008
Newport Guitar Festival, FLA 2008

Healdsburg Guitar Festival, CA 2007
Boats & Bluegrass Festival, MN 2007
Unvarnished Music Festival , MN 2007
North Versus South Festival, KS 2007
Minnesota State Fair, MN 2007
Kandiyohi County fair, MN 2007

Newport Guitar Festival, RI 2006
Unvarnished Music Festival, MN 2006
Minnesota State Fair, MN 2006

Intercontinental Guitar Festival, CZ 2004
Resophonic Guitar Festival, MN 2002-2004

The Brass Kings new CD "Washboard Rope Guitar"

"Resonator Guitar, Washtub Bass, Washboard, Fridge Door, and Hand Drum --- that's the musical lineup for this Minneapolis based "Alt-folk stringband." The group is led by Steve Kaul who wrote all the songs except for their version of a Yiddish traditional piece, which is so unique, they might as well have written it. Song topics include the story of a tinsmith, and a moment by moment description by a miner and a canary as the mine collapses. Steve also vividly details what a factory worker is thinking about as he produces parts for a bomb. The song is cleverly titled "Killing Time." This is fairly thoughtful fodder for a bluesy string band, but they did say they were 'alt-folk.' This 'alt' term is being thrown around a lot lately; perhaps for The Brass Kings 'alt' means traditional instruments backing intelligent editorials. I think they're ready for a national audience. Folk Alley will give them one."
- Folk Alley, 2008

"...Kaul steps out as a bona-fide local treasure on this disc, from his dazzling resophonic guitar work in songs such as "17th Crow Wing Lake Breakdown" to his vividly drawn story-songs, including "Northbound" and "Killing Time."
- Minneapolis Star Tribune, 2008

Steve has performed at festivals in the US and Europe and has garnered accolades for his guitar playing and songwriting. He continues to write and record both for his solo project and for The Brass Kings. His blending of aggressive country-blues fingerpicking with world music influences gives the Brass Kings a unique style.

Mikkel Beckmen began playing with Charlie Parr on a case of beer bottles many years ago. He honed his skills playing with a host of great musicians including the legendary Greg Brown. He plays a Brass King washboard, refrigerator parts and pieces of wood.

Brad Ptacek grew up in Babbit Minnesota - a feisty punk-loving kid on the range. Moving to Minneapolis, he attended art school, landed a bass gig with the Urban Guerillas and toured regionally. He plays his homemade washtub bass with a punk-rockers energy - coaxing notes from an instrument most people have a hard time just keeping in tune.