Loading Events
This event has passed.
Sat Jul 22 | all ages
Big Mama Shakes | Bencoolen
8:00 pm
7:00 pm
$15 | Advance
$15 | Day of show

Since it’s inception in late 2012, Washington DC-based band AZTEC SUN has hypnotized the ears and feet of the District’s live music aficionados. No matter the scale of the venue, this ensemble maintains an upbeat and retro groove steeped in 70’s Funk and Soul, Jazz, Afro-funk and Motown-era pop. Their infectious songwriting and energetic live performances have yielded rewards for the group – such as being named Best Local Original Band by the Washington City Paper and sharing the stage with international and national touring acts such as Burning Spear, The Suffers, Pimps of Joytime, Naughty Professor, Alanna Royale, and Major and the Monbacks.

AZTEC SUN marks the end of a fantastic year with a December release of their debut studio EP, Set You Free. The self-produced and live-tracked project is both a preview of a full-length album planned for 2017 and an example of the band’s incessant desire to challenge its own rhythm.

Big Mama Shakes
"Southern Americana Rock" band, Big Mama Shakes, wants nothing more than to push the envelope. Formed in Williamsburg, VA, in the summer of 2013, they show their original style and bring back an old sound in a way all ages can enjoy. After crafting their sound, into what they knew was the right direction, they made the move to Richmond, VA to access the diverse scene. The scene responded well and gave the band the platform they needed to move forward. With influences such as Kings of Leon, The Black Keys, and Bruce Springsteen, in May 2015, they presented their debut album "As She Does". Following the release of the album, they played along side huge names including: Dirty Heads, Passion Pit, Incubus, Nathaniel Rateliff, and more. They announced an east coast tour, then, continued to play multiple festivals for the duration of the summer. Their critically acclaimed EP, "If I Try", was released in April of 2016 and is now available on all major platforms. Between stepping into the studio to work on brand new music and consistently touring, the group stays busy. Brady Heck (Lead Vocals / Guitar), Gabriel Taylor (Vocals / Guitar), Peter Cason (Vocals / Bass), Bryce Doyle (Vocals / Keyboard), and Chandler Matkins (Vocals / Drums) make up Big Mama Shakes.
The transition from 2015 to 2016 was a hectic time for Bencoolen. The rock and roll outfit found themselves ramping up from occasional local performances to touring the East Coast, with a new lineup. With this solidified group, Bencoolen has evolved into a maximalist rock group that features soaring vocals, stunning guitar work, and soulful saxophone lines. Together they have been hired as opening support for Big Something, Yo Mama’s Big Fat Booty Band, Atlas Road Crew, the Mowgli’s, and Marcus King Band. Bencoolen has also picked up festival slots in NC, VA, and DE, headlined by stops at The Big What and Firefly Music Festival in 2017.