Dayton’s Kick-n-Flava launches into busy season

Dayton’s Kick-n-Flava launches into busy season
By D. Thrasher
Contributing Writer

Spring and summer is always the busiest time of year for Kick-n-Flava. However, this year is filled with even bigger opportunities for the Dayton- based R&B group, which launches a high profile season of music with a Jazz & Beyond series concert at Dayton Art Institute on Thursday, May 8.

Kick-n-Flava will follow up that concert with hometown performances at FiveRivers MetroParks summer R&B music series concert at RiverScape MetroPark in Dayton on Friday, June 13, and a $2 Tuesday’s concert at Fraze Pavilion on Aug. 5.

“This is going to be a great tour for us,” percussionist David Matthews said.

“We’re not only doing the three biggies here in Dayton — Dayton Art Institute, RiverScape and Fraze Pavilion — but in between we’re going to be moving around and doing everything from concerts and festivals to family reunions and anniversary parties.”

The band, which is led by Jerry Hawes (keyboards, vocals), also includes Mike Allamby (saxophone), Gil Frazier (trombone), Claude Coatie (lead guitar), J.D. Williams (bass) and Brian Smiley (drums).

“We’re excited to be doing the Fraze for the first time,” Hawes said. “We’ve been calling them for some years now trying to get on their schedule. We’re hoping we do a great job there so we can be called back again. Their schedule this year is great and they’re selling out shows already so I’m really looking forward to playing there. “I’ve been playing music a long time and we’re trying to pull these kinds of bigger gigs instead of just playing anywhere and everywhere around town,” Hawes continued. “We feel real good about our schedule this year. We’ll be at the Ohio Fish & Shrimp Festival in Urbana for the third year. We always have a good time there. It just feels great the way people receive us when we go do those things.” Kick-n-Flava has other high profile performances out of town, including the Grove City Summer Sizzle Music Series in Columbus and the Creekside Blues and Jazz Festival in Gahanna. The group continues to draw audiences and impress concert promoters with its high energy show, professional approach and a playbook of classic songs from the 1960s to the present. “We don’t do hip-hop but we do a little bit of everything else,” Matthews said. “We do jazz, R&B and we’ve even added some blues. We’re a very professional entertainment experience you’re sure to enjoy. And we’re not just standing there playing. We have enough energy on stage that it becomes contagious and you’ll want to share that experience with friends and loved ones.”


Dayton’s Kick-n-Flava launches into busy season Kick-n-Flava is (counterclockwise from left) David Matthews, Claude Coatie, Gil Frazier, Jerry Hawes, Mike Allamby, J.D. Williams and Brian Smiley.

HOW TO GO What: The 2014 Vectren Jazz & Beyond series presents Kick-n-Flava Where: Dayton Art Institute’s Shaw Gothic Cloister, 456 Belmonte Park N., Dayton When: 5:30 to 8 p.m. Thursday Cost: $8 adults, $5 seniors, groups and active military, free for museum members More info: 937-223-5277 or visit www.daytonartins Don Thrasher Rock Insider