Relaxed but Rock Solid: Derek Mack Band on a Hot Clematis Night

To call “relaxed” the high energy act that is the Derek Mack Band seems a bit odd, but it’s refreshing to watch a band that is so comfortable with what they do so well that they can relax while they do it…  Derek’s band took over Clematis Thursday for a few hours and made all the crowd a part of the Derek Mack Band family.

Watch the videos for the energetic, but effortless vocals (from Mack and his younger brother, Troy McCray, and a new voice, Sierra Washington), a smooth but incredible rhythm section and keys (Derek introduces the band in video pt5), and all driven by Mack’s musical director/drummer and groove king, Caesar Griffin ( a couple videos focus on his amazing drumming).  You can have a bad band with a great bass and drummer, but you can’t have a great band like Mack’s without a stellar rhythm section. The grooving, funky backbone provided by the incredible bass and drums combined with the great strat work by Mack and smooth supporting keys made for a great show.

And they hail from right here in Palm Beach County…

Here’s their cover of Earth Wind and Fire (Let’s Groove Tonight):

The band does a great job covering [the artist currently known as] Prince. Here’s the first of a couple Prince songs they did (listen to the bass and drums lock up on this):

And here they break down some Michael Jackson tunes (check out the “horns” at 1:45; great keyboard covering these parts, and all through the medley):

Gotta throw in a couple of videos that feature Caesar on drums; this guy sticks in the groove like glue while still throwing in great fills. And all this in 90 degree plus weather well into their third hour of playing… Sheesh!

(Some of my fellow drummers say that Caesar overplays; heck, I’d overplay too if I could stay locked in the groove like this guy does. Keep it up, Caesar!)

And to cap it off; another Prince song which Mack covers perfectly on guitar, never a small feat; check out the great lead at 8:00:

The Derek Mack Band is a regular in downtown West Palm Beach; if you haven’t heard them before, make sure you catch their next show.

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