Last time we spoke with
Last time we spoke with The Southern Belles in July, they talked about their drunken mall Frisbee shenanigans, and releasing their sophomore album Close to Sunrise before embarking on an East Coast Tour.
One of RVA’s favorite psychedelic rock and roll groups that bring the funk every single time they take the stage has been going strong since 2010 playing constant shows around town and now they’re ready to kick off a 16-week tour-but with some lineup changes.
Their former longtime drummer Raphael Katchinoff has left the band to play for The Congress, a Richmond rock and roll band that’s now back in Richmond from Denver.
“It was sort of his dream job, he felt like he couldn’t say no to that so we made a schedule for him to finish the year with us,” said Guitarist/Vocalist Adrian Ciucci. “He did that and we had a great farewell show for him at The Camel.”
The Southern Belles announced his departure back in mid-December and have brought in Aaron Zarrow, former drummer for Philadelphia funk band The Royal Noise as a replacement.
Ciucci said the band is happy for Katchinoff getting the new gig with The Congress, but they’re also excited to have Zarrow on board.
“He was the first person I thought of and I hadn’t even had a chance to reach out to him yet and he called me,” he said. “He’s come down here a handful of times and it sounds very good.”
Ciccui said Zarrow called with 24 hours of the band announcing Katchinoff’s departure.
Keyboardist Tommy Booker said they met Zarrow backstage at JibberJazz Productions’ Some Kind of Jam Festival in Pennsylvania two years ago.
“They played right after us on the same stage,” Booker said. “They heard our set, liked it, we stayed around for their set, and everybody’s mind was pretty much blown.”
Booker added that over the next year they did a handful of shows together. And don’t worry Southern Belles fans, Ciucci assured me Zarrow would deliver.
“He’s a really well trained jazz drummer, who does a lot of cross over with funk and rock,” he said.
Initially, the band planned to take this month off to regroup with the lineup change, but Red Light Management called to offer them a spot Jan. 28 at The Jefferson in Charlottesville.
The following week, on Feb. 5, The Southern Belles will kick off their tour in RVA at The Camel After that, the band hits Florida, New York, Connecticut, Vermont, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Tennessee, Iowa, Montana and finishes up with a nine-day stint in Colorado ending the tour on March 19.
“I’m excited I like being busy, driving everyday waking up with one purpose, get to the place, set up and put on a show,” he said.
Last time we heard jams from these guys, it was the release of Close to Sunrise back in the summer.
And though they’ll be busy on the road, Ciucci revealed that fans can expect some new jams for this year.
“We’re always writing new material,” he said. “We’re going to have new material right off the bat for these upcoming shows. Another record is wanted in the future, there’s going to be a lot for the Belles in 2016.”
Check out all of the dates for The Southern Belles tour here.