Jamming to a different beat 

Jamming to a different beat

Who: Crowd Control Collective

Where: The Crab Shack

When: Saturday, Dec. 28, 10:30 p.m.

It’s always a good time when a group of accomplished musicians get together to jam, but when you throw in one of Canada’s best urban style DJs and a soul singing freestyler on the verge of super stardom, it can only mean one thing: Cancel All Prior Engagements.

The Shack has snared Crowd Control Collective, an eclectic mix of artists who occasionally come together to create an energy that only musical experimentation can bring. There’s no set formula for most of the Collective’s show, and it’s not really necessary. Each member comes armed with a multitude of talent and experience that makes their improvised vibe work like magic.

Consider the Collective a revolving door of professional and underground talents, grouped together by producer and drummer, Tim Proznik. He books a few gigs a year under the Crowd Control name, introducing respected friends and colleagues in the nu skool movement.

"I try and get different MCs and DJs that I’ve seen and know have a night off. I ask them to come and meet other musicians who I know would work well together and the results speak for themselves," said Proznik. "It’s amazing to watch the magic unfold and see the excitement in everybody’s eyes as they feel a new and unique vibe."

So who does Proznik have lined up for the Crab Shack set?

"I’ve got the amazing vocalist Kia Kadiri, the best DJ around, Mat the Alien, bassist Brad Ferguson from Econoline Crush, and Chin’s Scott Sanft on keyboards."

Kia Kadiri is in high demand and an explosive performer in her own right. Along the same vein as America’s Jill Scott or Angie Stone, she’s part of Canada’s burgeoning Nu Soul movement with hip hop credibility. Kadiri has done duets with Prevail and Moka Only from Swollen Members, is a regular in Van City’s Stir Fry Crew and has sung backing vocals for the West Coast’s best turntablists, including DJ Vinyl Ritchie.

Proznik started Crowd Control Collective in Toronto several years ago, where the name was used in conjunction with his successful jungle and hip hop parties. He returned to Vancouver two years ago as a producer and drummer and found tonnes of undiscovered talent just waiting to be noticed.

"I decided to showcase all this untapped energy by re-starting the Collective vibe," he said. "I’m taking the Neptunes approach."

The Neptunes approach is basically becoming a Svengali behind a name. They wrote and produced hits like Britney Spears’ "I’m A Slave 4 U" track and arranged tunes for Puff Daddy.

The improvised atmosphere of a Crowd Control Collective performance means that each member’s talents, both as a solo artist and when working in a team, can be showcased.

"It’s so much fun because we leave it very open to go wherever the crowd and the crew wants it to, and whoever wants to shine can do so."

Crowd Control Collective: jazzy urban styles with hip hop sounds and nu skool soulful lyrics, a fine fusion of talent that should not be missed. Tickets available from the Crab Shack. Ph: 604-932-4451. Doors open at 10 p.m.

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