‘It’s a composer’s dream’: Snarky Puppy jams in Santa Barbara

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Snarky Puppy live. Photo credit: Vincent Le Gallic

Snarky Puppy is hard to pin down when it comes down to musical style. It’s part jam band, part jazz collective, part R+B group with roots that stretch from Brooklyn, New York to Dallas, Texas.

With as many as 25 members in regular rotation, they maintain busy schedules as sidemen (with such artists as Erykah Badu, Snoop Dogg, Kendrick Lamar, and D’Angelo), producers (for Kirk Franklin, David Crosby, and Salif Keïta), and solo artists (many of whom are on the band’s indy label, GroundUP Music). Each instrumentalist adds a unique flavor and contributes his own compositions to the group. 
"it's a composer's dream to have all these incredible musicians and that array of instruments at your disposal, but with the caveat that every single person in that group is functioning like a producer, meaning you're producing the music in real time," said Bob Reynolds, who plays saxophone in Snarky Puppy. "You're a listener first, a player second. Everyone is listening to make the song the best it can be every time. And everyone is checking their ego at the door. It just becomes one unit."
This Sunday, they’ll make their way straight from the Walt Disney Concert Hall in L.A. to the Granada Theater in Santa Barbara.




Larry Perel


Kathryn Barnes