Become a member and get exclusive access to articles, live sessions and more!
Start Your Free Trial

Galactic Announces East Coast Tour

On the heels of a successful West Coast summer tour, jazz-funk sextet Galactic will return to the East for a special, all-instrumental fall tour. Kicking off on Tuesday, October 12 at the Water Street Music Hall in Rochester, N.Y., the tour will cover 11 venues in the Northeast (including a two-night stand at New York City’s Irving Plaza) before heading for three weeks of shows in the Southeast. The tour will include a two-night stand at Washington, D.C.’s 9:30 Club, a Halloween weekend stop at Tipitina’s in New Orleans, and Galactic’s annual Halloween night show at Stubb’s in Austin. The band will return to its hometown of New Orleans after the tour to play a special New Year’s Eve show at Tipitina’s for the first time since 1998.

Bluegrass string-band combo Hackensaw Boys will take the opening slot for the beginning of the fall tour, with Scratch (of the Roots) taking over mid-tour, and groove-jazz act the Duo playing a series of dates in early November. Instrumental trio Drums & Tuba will help close out the tour with a four-date slot in mid-November. Other notable guests include Latin hip-hop/funk band Ozomatli, playing at Philadelphia’s Electric Factory, and Grateful Dead spin-off Ratdog, which will join Galactic for a double bill in Allentown, Penn. At a special show on Sunday, October 24, at New York City’s Irving Plaza, Mofro vocalist JJ Grey will open and sit in with Galactic, along with a host of other guest players (check for announcements). On Halloween weekend, San Francisco’s DJ Motion Potion will join Galactic and Scratch for a late-night dance party at Tipitina’s in New Orleans.

With the departure of vocalist Theryl “Houseman” DeClouet, Galactic is making a swift return to its instrumental roots after releasing several studio albums that featured vocal tracks. Now in pre-production for a new album, the band will use its time on stage this fall to experiment with new compositions and revisit classic Galactic material in instrumental arrangements. “When you work with vocalists you have to cater to what they do,” says saxophonist Ben Ellman. “Now, we can concentrate on doing what we do and really solidify our sound.” Songs with minor vocal components will take on stretched-out instrumental variations on this tour, while older material will enjoy extra instrumental exploration. The band may also resurrect songs from its earliest albums to play them live for the first time. “We started out as an instrumental band,” notes bassist Robert Mercurio, “so we’re returning to our roots, except now we’re so much better, and the range of what we can do is much wider.”

Galactic continues to tour on the strength of its latest studio album, Ruckus, released in 2003. Produced by Dan the Automator (Dr. Octagon, Gorillaz, Blue Man Group, John Spencer Blues Explosion), the album is Galactic’s fourth studio effort, a follow-up to 2002’s live release We Love ‘Em Tonight and 2000’s Late for the Future.

Galactic’s fall 2004 tour dates:


12 • Water Street Music Hall • Rochester, NY

13 • Sphere Entertainment Complex • Buffalo, NY

14 • Mr. Small’s Theatre • Pittsburgh, PA

15 • Electric Factory • Philadelphia, PA

16 • Stabler Arena – Lehigh University • Bethlehem, PA

19 • Paradise Rock Club • Boston, MA

20 • Lupo’s at the Strand • Providence, RI

21 • Toad’s Place • New Haven, CT

22 • Stone Pony • Asbury Park, NJ

23 & 24 • Irving Plaza • New York, NY

27 • The Library • Oxford, MS

28 • Varsity Theatre • Baton Rouge, LA

29 • Tipitina’s Uptown • New Orleans, LA

30 • Meridian • Houston, TX

31 • Stubb’s BBQ • Austin, TX


3 • Starr Hill Music Hall • Charlottesville, VA

4 • Recher Theatre • Towson, MD

5 & 6 • 9:30 Club • Washington DC

7 • The Norva Theatre • Norfolk, VA

9 • Lincoln Theatre • Raleigh, NC

10 • Music Farm • Charleston, SC

11 • Roxy Theatre • Atlanta, GA

12 • Georgia Theatre • Athens, GA

Originally Published