Check out Nashville 10-piece outfit Broomestix's Reverb Nation page and you'll hear a young band with talent and promise; a little rough around the edges, maybe, but with all the makings of a sizzling soul revue.
But peruse some of the 'stix's YouTube offerings, and you'll hear something else entirely, a mature and polished soul/funk/jazz outfit, and a live ensemble whose poised performances belie the members' tender years.
"The Reverb Nation stuff came from shortly after we got together," says keyboardist and band namesake Conner Broome with a sheepish chuckle. "I need to update that. We're not doing anything that different musically, but we're a much better version of what we were then."
Broomestix began about five years ago, while Broome was till in high school. He and a few fellow members of the school orchestra decided that high school band wasn't challenging enough for their flourishing chops and ever-broadening musical interests, and began playing funk and R&B gigs at any venue that would have them.
Along the way, they picked up a few additional members, finished school, whereupon several 'stixers headed out for college and more music studies, at Nashville-area Belmont and Middle Tennessee State University.
Broome tells that the 'stix's founding members shared a love of bedrock funk like Stevie Wonder and James Brown, but also of classic jazz and fusion, Coltrane and Herbie Hancock and the like. As the band progressed, latter-day jazz-rock units such as Moon Child and Snarky Puppy figured into the mix, as did modern R&B the likes of Erykah Badu and D'Anegelo.
"Our style just kind of fell into place," Broome says. "We all liked some of the same funk and soul. And as we played more shows, it morphed into a kind of funky R&B, heavy on the groove and with lots of jazz-style harmonies."
Broomestix now has two full-length CDs, the first a self-titled effort recorded while most members were still mere sophomores in high school. Last year brought album number two, "Running from the Law," and Broome says a third platter is now in the works, a record that should show off a young band in the full flower of its creative development.
"A lot of our growth is based on listening to each other as musicians," Broome says. "In that sense, we're kind of like a jam band. The more we play, the more we play off each other, and the better we read each other. That allows us to create a direction and a sound from all of our different inputs."
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