Concert Review: Sharon Jones, October 29th, Kool Haus

Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings

Toronto – Last Wednesday brought Toronto a veritable soul queen in Sharon Jones. For those of you who are new to Sharon Jones, she is spear-heading a throwback to good old fashioned funk and R&B. Sharon was backed by her band the Dap-Kings, the house band from her label: Daptone Records. Seeing them live is the closest I can imagine to being in Harlem during the height of soul and funk in the 70’s.

The Dap-Kings are tight. Most notable for me was watching the bassist Bosco Mann get to work. He held everything down like nobody’s business and was clearly leading the charge. It didn’t surprise me to discover later that he is the mastermind behind large swathes of Sharon’s repertoire. In a world of synthesized music (much of which I enjoy), I must say that there’s something really clean and refreshing about listening to an old-school funk band. No crazy digitized effects, just straight up bare-bones amplification for the guitars, bass, drums, sweet brass, and of course the very impressive pipes of Mrs Jones.

But what review is complete without a comment about the venue? The answer of course is many. But I’ll talk about the Kool Haus anyway. Although I’ve never been a huge fan of the Kool Haus/Government, I do have a juicy little tidbit for all you keen concert going types. Yes, it’s hard to get to, and yes it’s a bit out of the way. Yes, you have to pay for parking, but there is parking on the street that’s free. Yes, those spots evaporate quickly. BUT, if you drive one street west and the drive north of the highway, there is a much higher chance you’ll find parking on the street and, it’s still only a 5 minute walk from the venue. Most people never think to park north of the Gardiner.

I do realize that broadcasting this little tip means that I’ll be less likely to park there myself next time. So don’t ever say I don’t do stuff for you people.

Sharon Jones 4/5

Posted on by Mark in Concerts