The Boston born, now generally Northeast based, but ever on-the-go Dopapod has come a long way from their college basement, DIY party roots. While maintaining to be as grassroots as their humble beginnings, the group has earned praise from taste making critics like Rolling Stone, Huffington Post, Jambase, Relix, and The Boston Herald, all the while tending to their ever expanding community of devoted listeners. The past 4 years have individually held the weight of about 150 shows, which have included numerous festival appearances like Bonnaroo, Wakarusa, Summer Camp, Electric Forest, Camp Bisco, Peach Fest, & Gathering Of the Vibes. All of this time on stage with each other has given the band the opportunity to explore the wide variety of influences that has impacted them to be the players they are today. But, don’t be quick to think that the no holds barred experimentation is unguided. While the brush in their hand uses every color, it’s the stroke on the canvas that gives Dopapod a distinct voice in the way of crafty songwriting.
That calculated, compositional mindset and restless nature to never sit too still is what has allowed Dopapod to fully realize their fourth studio release, Never Odd Or Even. Guitarist/vocalist Rob Compa giddily tells, “We really felt that the material this time around represented a big leap forward, not just in the way we’ve been interacting as a band, but in the way our focus has become sharper in paying attention to things like melody, theme, lyrical imagery, and structure – all the elements that make a great song.”
Determined to have that maturity translate in the studio, the band enlisted friend and producer Jason “Jocko” Randall to both engineer and produce the record. Keys/vocalist Eli Winderman couldn’t be happier about how things went. “We lived at his studio for about a month for these sessions and it just clicked right away. Jocko immediately became another member of band in many ways. With his attitude and approach to the recording process, we were able to really dial in the sounds we wanted, get those perfect takes we were aiming for, and have a blast the whole way through.” Released in November of 2014, Never Odd Or Even serves as the spark that the band has ignited to launch them into and exciting 2015.
THE NTH POWER:
Proving that soul music can be exponentially greater than the sum of its parts, The Nth Power is on a mission to share the light. Formed during an impromptu late-night jam at Jazz Fest 2012 in New Orleans, the relentlessly funky and soulful band believes in music as a higher power—tapping into an energy that is simultaneously sexy and spiritual, with songs that will inspire audiences to dance, groove, make love or just stand there with goose bumps.
The quintet hails from diverse musical backgrounds, races and creeds. Female powerhouse Nikki Glaspie was Beyonce’s world-touring drummer for five years before she joined Ivan Neville’s New Orleans funk outfit, Dumpstaphunk. Bassist Nate Edgar of Groovechild and John Brown’s Body perfectly compliments Singer and Guitarist Nick Cassarino who came from the Jennifer Hartswick Band and toured with Big Daddy Kane. Next add West African Master-Percussionist, Weedie Braimah to the mix with his insurmountable world beat rhythms. Finally rounding off the ensemble is the newest and youngest member, Courtney J’Mell Smith who brings his soulful vocals and keyboard abilities to the table.
“Just know that when you hear this music, you’re going to feel something—you’re going to connect with something higher than yourself,” explains Braimah.
The Nth Power’s 2013 independent EP, Basic Minimum Skills Test, showcases a first glimpse of the spark shared among the group, delivering gospel-style vocals with soul, jazz, funk and world-beat riffs in nearly mathematical fashion.
“It’s my dream team,” said Glaspie. “Each one of us is a songwriter, so when we get together, everything becomes that much stronger.” Beyond raw skill, however, Glaspie cites a deep spiritual connection as the glue that binds them together. “Music is what brought us together, but it’s the spiritual bond that makes us play so in touch with each other,” she explained.
And at the core of their vibe is a deviously simple concept—the healing power of love.
Following The Nth Power’s 2013 debut, their inspirational sets floored audiences at music festivals like Electric Forest, Bear Creek, Catskill Chill and North Coast Music Festival. In just the last six months, the group has performed more than 50 shows in 21 states across the US, and made their second international appearance at Australia’s Caloundra Music Festival on their 2014 “Fall In Love Tour.”
Although the band members are based across the East Coast, they maintain New Orleans as their “spiritual home,” and the celebratory essence of that city’s music culture is audible in each performance.
Simply put, there is something pretty magical happening in this band, and they’re only just getting started. “We’re going as far as you can go on the planet Earth and playing music,” explains Glaspie. “I don’t know how many times we’ve said it — we are so blessed.”
Together, The Nth Power wants to change lives through a message of musical love and understanding. “Just know that when you hear this music, you’re going to feel something—you’re going to connect with something higher than yourself,” Braimah explained.
In September 2015, The Nth Power will release their first full-length studio album, Abundance. The studio version of the album’s lead single “Only Love” will debut in June 2015 and promises a soul-surrendering groove steeped in fellowship among all who hear it. They have a live recording of this song already in regular rotation on Sirius XM Radio’s “Jam On” station.