2008 – present (9 years)
Legendary delta bluesman Son House spoke about a passion for his music and was quoted as saying "I'm talkin' 'bout the blues. . . I ain't talkin' 'bout monkey junk!" MonkeyJunk is a band that draws heavily on the legends of the blues and translates that influence into a contemporary blend of swamp R&B, soul boogie and bedroom funk. This triple threat trio comprised of STEVE MARRINER, TONY D and MATT SOBB draws on ALMOST 60 years of combined experience playing blues live and in studio . . . and it shows.
In the fall of 2008, MonkeyJunk was nominated for a Maple Blues Award for best new artist - a rare feat only having been in existence for 6 months and not having released a record yet . . . In February 2009, MonkeyJunk represented Ottawa, Canada at The International Blues Challenge held in Memphis, TN competing amongst 100 bands from Poland, Croatia, Norway, Italy, Israel, Sweden, France, Australia and North America. After the smoke cleared on Beale St., MonkeyJunk had placed THIRD OVERALL!
In April 2009, MonkeyJunk released their debut CD Tiger In Your Tank to critical acclaim thanks to strong support from radio internationally - namely satellite radio, CBC Radio (Canada Live and Saturday Night Blues) as well as many specialty blues radio shows from all over the world including North America, Europe, and South America. MonkeyJunk's song Small Time Evil was featured on fellow Canuck Dan Aykroyd's internationally syndicated "House Of Blues Radio Hour" Oct 4th 2009 as the "blues breaker of the week". The rest of the year saw the band tour from coast to coast in Canada and at prestigious festivals such as Fredericton, NB's Harvest Jazz & Blues festival, Montreal International Jazz Festival, Ottawa Bluesfest, Mont Tremblant Blues festival, Toronto Beaches Jazz festival and others. To finish out the year, MonkeyJunk appear in Europe for the first time at the renowned Blues-Sur-Seine festival in Mantes-La-Jolie, France.
2010 started off with a bang at the Maple Blues Awards - Canada's National Blues Music Awards program. MonkeyJunk was nominated for 6 awards and won 5 of them including Entertainer of The Year and Electric Act of the Year. Tony D won for Guitar Player of the Year and Steve Marriner took the honours for Male Vocalist of the Year and Harmonica Player of the Year. At Canadian Music Week in Toronto in March 2010, Monkeyjunk beat out such respected artists as Jim Byrnes, Harrison Kennedy, Colin Linden and Colin James to win Best Blues Artist at the Canadian Independent Music Awards.
It kept rolling on for MonkeyJunk - they were nominated for a 2010 Blues Music Award (formerly WC Handy Awards) for Best New Artist Debut for Tiger In Your Tank and WON IT! They also performed at the awards ceremony as the finale for the show held at the Cook Convention Center in Memphis, TN on May 6, 2010. This is likely the most prestigious award the band has been honoured with to date. MonkeyJunk is the second ever Canadian act in 30 years to win a Blues Music Award (second only to Jeff Healey who won an award last year). Buddy Guy, Bonnie Raitt, Pinetop Perkins and many other blues legends were present and the band feels very lucky to be recognized in such highly esteemed company.
The rest of 2010 will see the band touring coast to coast in Canada and internationally - appearing at your favourite juke joints, dive bars, theatres and festival stages. As well, Tiger In Your Tank has been re-released internationally on the Vizztone Label and distributed by RedEye around the world.
Go get yourself some MonkeyJunk!
Matt Sobb plays LOS CABOS DRUMSTICKS and DREAM CYMBALS
Steve Marriner uses Lone Wolf Harp Co. products
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