The Shadowboxers is a new project from famed blues town Lincoln, Nebraska. The band is headed by Joshua Hoyer and features a group of professional and seasoned roots musicians. Hoyer is part of the funk, soul and blues youth movement spending much of his time promoting the genres in Lincoln at the legendary Zoo Bar and beyond. Hoyer has been very in demand as a performer in his previous bands (Son of ’76 and the Watchmen, Electric Soul Method), as a solo artist behind the piano and as a session musician and arranger. The Shadowboxers include some of the areas most revered and accomplished musicians, many of whom have toured the country with large bands, teach music and are asked to back up bands live and in the studio. The band’s sound and passion come from their deep respect, knowledge of and passion for blues, Americana, soul, funk, and many other styles of music. The material is mostly Hoyer’s original work, along with some choice covers that reflect Josh’s love of New Orleans music, soul and funk. As leader of his previous band, Son of 76 & The Watchmen, Hoyer won the 2008 OEA (Omaha Entertainment & Arts Award) for Best R&B/Soul/Funk band and was nominated for Best R&B/Soul and Best Blues of 2009. As a member of Lil’ Slim Blues Band, Hoyer participated in the 2012 International Blues Challenge in Memphis, where Lil’ Slim Blues Band made it into the semi-finals. Hoyer’s current band members host or participate in some of the most respected jams in the area, so this will be the band to jam with at Sin City Soul & Blues Revival. They come out to throw it down. Look for them to pop up in various places over the course of the event beyond their set time. If any other artist needs a little extra something--we expect them to come calling on these guys first.
“’We're bringing the light.’ [Hoyer said.] The light comes from a 50/50 mix of original songs and covers, versions of classics by Curtis Mayfield, The Meters, Dr. John and Albert King. ’We want to do a mix of things,’ Hoyer said during a rehearsal break. ‘Some Memphis sound, some New Orleans sounds, some psychedelic funk. There are places where there's Motown sounds in there with the other stuff.’… What I got was about 40 minutes of the set the horn-powered soul/funk/R&B band will play at its first ever show Friday…The band will get tighter and have more original songs. But, as they will demonstrate Friday, Hoyer and The Shadowboxers already throw a pretty good punch.” –L. Kent Wolgamott, Lincoln Journal-Star
“The Shadowboxers are coming out firing on all cylinders, smashing styles together to come up with their own groove. Funky soul packed with power, it's Dr. John meets Al Green backed by Booker T and the MGs. You know, the good stuff.”-Charlie Johnson, Producer/Engineer Fuse Recording
“Joshua Hoyer is one of the Lincoln-Omaha scene’s finest songwriters. His new project, The Shadowboxers, gives equal weight to his great songs, his rich, soulful, distinctive vocals and his ability to put together funky, driving and passionate collaborations with his fellow musicians. These guys all cut their teeth in the historic Zoo Bar, so they know that at its best the music itself is alive. They bring the funk and respect the groove. The Shadowboxers mix fresh spins on some of Hoyer’s familiar tunes from his previous band (Sons of 76) with new songs and hip, soulful arrangements of classic New Orleans tunes and other favorites. Did I mention the horn section? This band’s sound soars and fills up the dance floor with funky joy.” –B.J.Huchtemann, senior contributing writer & Hoodoo columnist, The Reader
, Omaha, NE