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The Uptown Band (Pennsylvania)
|Origin||Reading/Shillington, Pennsylvania, United States|
|Genres||Jazz, funk, pop|
|Labels||Uptown Band Music|
The Uptown Band (Pennsylvania) is an American band that was formed in Reading/Shillington, Pennsylvania, United States, in late 2005. The band's music contains both original and cover songs with elements of R&B, jazz, soul, funk, pop, and rock. The group is known for the unique interplay between the contrasting performing styles of their lead vocalists, and for its ability to play a large variety of music. The band's name was created by the band's former drummer, Omer Godinet.
In The Beginning
Erich Cawalla (manager, vocals, saxophone, flute), Jenifer Kinder (vocals, percussion), Rick Wiltrout (piano), Lamont Bates (bass), Mike Schwartz (guitar, vocals), Omer Godinet (drums, vocals), and Robin Church (trumpet) formed the band in Cawalla and Kinder's basement. The members performed together previously in other Reading-based bands including the Bobby Mercer Road Show, Burning House, Bunchafunk, and Synergy. The current lineup includes three of the original members (Cawalla, Kinder, & Bates). Wiltrout was replaced by Dave Fenwick, former piano player for The Dovells, in January 2007, Church was replaced by Tim Thompson in November 2009, Schwartz was replaced by Dewey Wahl in November 2010, and Godinet left the band in December 2010 after moving to Florida. The band's first performance was in March 2006 at the former Casa Grande Ristorante in Wyomissing, Pennsylvania, as part of the annual Berks Jazz Festival.
Release of Debut CD "Waiting for Her"
The band independently released its debut CD "Waiting for Her" on November 8, 2008, at Gerald Veasley's Jazz Base in Reading, PA. The CD offers an eclectic mix of Jazz, Funk, Rock, Pop, and Soul and includes original songs written by band members Erich Cawalla, Jenifer Kinder, and Dave Fenwick, as well as Scott Verret and Producer Marty Mellinger. "Waiting for Her" has received extremely positive reviews including Randy Mahon of The Urban Music Scene exclaiming that "the music industry needs more bands like this." Songs from "Waiting for Her" have been very favorably received by AM/FM and Internet radio stations throughout the world including airplay on Pandora, DMX Radio, and other Smooth/Groove Jazz formatted stations. The band's debut single "You Treated Me Good" was the #1 Most-Added track in the country on the Groove Jazz Radio Chart for August 2, 2010 with 6 Adds beating out Chart regulars Incognito and Brian Culbertson. It has also been included in the Most-Added Chart on SmoothJazz.com. The title track from "Waiting for Her" is included on US Smooth Jazz's first compilation CD entitled Jazz Infusion which was released in June 2010.
Waiting for Her - 2008
Jazz Infusion - 2010 (Compilation CD by US Smooth Jazz including "Waiting for Her")
Merry Christmas Baby (Single) - 2010
O Holy Night" (Single) - 2011
SJ3 (Single) - 2013***peaked at #9 on Groove Jazz Radio Chart***
Close to You (Single) - 2014***peaked at #27 on USA Today Smooth Jazz Chart***
Heart, Soul, Body & Mind - 2014
The band performs at all types of events across the United States, boasting an incredibly diverse song list of original and cover songs from various genres of music. The group is represented by Anjoli Productions (www.anjoli.com) and publicist Lee' Colaguori.