On The Spot (OTS) Trio started in 2006 as “a fiercely funky threesome of musicians from Santa Cruz, CA, determined to take decisive action in espousing the doctrine of soul jazz dance parties across the land.” Their inspiration is rooted in 1970’s soul jazz and funk, which has been steeped in a millennial soup of rock, jazz, afro beat, and improvisational groove. Alan Evans—producer and drummer of Soulive—produced and appeared on OTS Trio’s debut album, Straight Out The Garden (2010), and forged a creative bond with OTS during these sessions, which resulted in the Suction 45rpm (Colemine Records, 2012) and SHAG (2014). In a twist of fate, when Evans formed his solo project, The Alan Evans Trio, OTS guitarist Danny Mayer was asked if he wanted to join…
Join he did, leaving Santa Cruz for the Berkshires, and organist / keyboardist Kris Yunker followed shortly afterwards, when The Alan Evans Trio became the rock organ trio Playonbrother. As Evans shifted his focus back to Soulive at the end of 2014, Mayer and Yunker—now both in New England—reformed On The Spot Trio, fusing their boogaloo and soul jazz roots with a more modern, hard hitting afro beat tinged jam band vibe. Now, with their new drummer Andrew Cusanelli, as well as continued special guests including Johnny Durkin on percussion from Deep Banana Blackout, and Mary Corso on vocals from Broca’s Area, On The Spot has been establishing a Northeast/Mid-Atlantic presence playing at festivals, and opening up for bands such as Deep Banana Blackout as they work their way back West.
Prior to the band’s hiatus, they had begun to establish a bit of a following in California, with monthly residencies at such renowned venues as the Boom Boom Room in San Francisco and the Crepe Place in Santa Cruz, as well as regular touring up-and-down the Pacific Coast and into Colorado. East Coast hits surrounded festivals, such as Catskill Chill Music Festival, and paved the way for future touring. OTS Trio have appeared and performed with DJ Logic, Monophonics, Wil Blades, 7 Come 11, Teddy Presberg Quartet, Boca de Rio, Juno What?!, Big Sam’s Funky Nation, Orgone, Particle, Ivan Neville’s Dumpstaphunk and many more, as well as innumerable individual members of some of these great bands.
“We have so much fun playing music, we try our hardest to bring 110 percent every time we play,” says Mayer. “Our goals for every show are to find those divine moments of inspiration, and to make sure people are smiling, dancing, and having a good time!”