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New Orleans Groove: Dumpstaphunk headlines Heights Summerfest

Dumpstaphunk is the headliner of this year’s Heights Summerfest.

Dumpstaphunk is bringing its New Orleans groove to Albuquerque for this year’s Heights Summerfest.

The festival on Saturday, June 8, will also feature local musicians Memphis P. Tails, The Big Spank, and Alex Maryol, children’s activities, an artisan market and food trucks. A microbrew garden will offer local spirits, beers and wines.

“We’re fortunate as a New Orleans band that we have a pretty sick culture that we get to bring with us and represent everywhere,” said Dumpstaphunk guitarist Ian Neville. “It’s definitely our own stamp on whatever event or festival or night that we get to hit in a different town. There’s not much confusing our New Orleans vibe with most other bands that float around the country.”

Dumpstaphunk enjoys slipping new music into its live sets.

“I like when we get to sneak in new Dumpstaphunk stuff, which we have been lately,” Neville said. “There’s a new one we’ve been doing called ‘Do You.’ That’s kind of just a fun tune, for whatever reason. It’s not like a rewriting-the-book-on-music or anything tune, but it’s just fun. We’ve been trying to sneak some new ones in, like, we’re slowly getting together another round of music to trickle out some releases and we’ve been sneaking some of those in lately to just keep it fresh.”

Dumpstaphunk’s music is a blend of genres, and the band has been inspired by artists including George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic, The Meters, Sly and the Family Stone and Tower of Power. The band was created when keyboardist Ivan Neville was asked to do a solo performance at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. He contacted a few musicians to be part of the performance and Dumpstaphunk was born. Ivan is the son of R&B and soul vocalist Aaron Neville.

Coming from a musical family also had a strong influence on Ian Neville.

“There was definitely a direct family connect, and definitely a direct music connection is The Meters,” he said. “That’s the band my dad (Art Neville) started back in the day with George Porter Jr., Leo Nocentelli and Zigaboo Modeliste, and that band, that is one of the most sampled bands in the history of music, period. To live up to even a portion of that influence in music would be an accomplishment for this band. They made an big impact in New Orleans and just worldwide. It’s cool to be associated with that.”

Growing up in New Orleans, Ian Neville was surrounded by music. He began playing drums around age 4 and moved on to guitar and bass when he was 11.

“There was no escaping a music culture,” he said. “That could be the case growing up in New Orleans, period, but my family was directly more entrenched in that whole scene. So it was kind of built into growing up – never any expectation or pressure or direction, but just being a part of it was just a natural thing.”

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