Striking a familiar chord, Midwest reggae/ska/soul group Green Room Rockers recently released their new ‘90s R&B/reggae inspired album, Sweat Steady. They are holding their official album release party at the Melody Inn’s big Thanksgiving celebration show on Friday, Nov. 17.
Singer and keys player Mark Cooper took some time to answer questions about the band’s big release.
Where is the band from?
GRR formed in Lafayette in 2006 to play a blend of reggae, rocksteady, ska, blues and soul. We have members from northwest Indiana and Chicago, which are also home turf for us.
How would you describe your sound for new fans catching you this Friday?
We would describe our sound as good time music!
How does this new album differ from your previous ones?
This new album is a flashback to those great ‘90s songs we grew up on. Sweat Steady is a concept record of ‘90s R&B done in a reggae style.
What's your favorite song to play from the new album?
We really enjoy playing these tunes because they really fire up the crowd, especially those who ska or reggae may be new to them.
Describe the writing process for one of the songs off the new album.
The record was brainstormed and recorded in Dirty North Studios in Chicago, IL. Our friend Anthony of the Drastically helped us record and sonically take these songs and make them our own. It was a blast.
Who/what inspired this new album?
Just being a teenager in the mid-to-late ‘90s was the main inspiration of this record.
We are inspired by old Jamaican and soul records from ‘60s and ‘70s, and of course modern punk and DIY movements.
What inspired you to release the new album on cassette and vinyl only?
Sweat Steady is out on vinyl and cassette and was part of the Cassette Store Day event this year. Our label Jump Up Records recommend cassette as it would be very much “of the time.” You could still buy cassettes in the ‘90s. And I didn’t have CD player in my car in high school anyway. Too broke for that!
What's next for Green Room Rockers?
We plan to play a few more release shows all around the Midwest and get to work on a batch of original tunes for next full length album. We hope to have that put in 2018.
To check out Sweat Steady, click here.
To check out the event page, click here. The other bands also playing this event are No Pit Cherries, Papa Warfleigh’s Funk Revival, and Rockstead.