Kes The Band kicked off its West Coast leg of the Liki Tiki Tour this week with a stirring showing on Wednesday September 28 at the House of Blues restaurant and bar in Anaheim, California.
Lead singer, Kees Dieffenthaller received a rousing cheer of approval as he invited the audience to rename the iconic “House of Blues” to the “House of Soca” during the performance.”Great to experience!” said Mixing Engineer, Dexter Simmons. He commented on the band’s IG page following the first show, adding, “Had an awesome time last night!”
Additional shows on the West Coast are scheduled for September 30th at The Music Box in San Diego, October 1st at Ace of Spades in Sacramento and October 2nd at Cornerstone in Berkeley.
These shows are carded to happen after thousands of Soca music-lovers came out recently to The Fillmore auditorium in Silver Springs, Maryland to experience the last East Coast stop of the ongoing Liki Tiki US Tour. Following successful stops and sets at the Theatre of Living Arts in Philadelphia and The Underground at Ink Block in Boston, opening act, L’shun “Jimmy October” Emmanuel and Haitian collaborator, Jonathan “JPerry” Perry joined Kes for a sold out show at The Fillmore.
“We played Maryland last night, which was insane!” Stated Emmanuel afterward. “Like for real, like.. Last night was really special. It was a sold out show and I was able to meet up with people and fans after, who were so enthusiastic and happy to see me for the first time and to experience us.
“Just seeing the energy of the people filling up a room and they’re all loving the music, our culture and loving the new things that we’re doing and it’s also me seeing Kes doing his thing at the same time too. That man is a legend 100%,” he said.
Emmanuel collaborated with Kes in 2020 on the hit single, “Magic” and revealed that he was thrilled to be included on the band’s current US Tour dates.
“Mind blown! For me, this is my first real tour – like series of shows back to back to back,” explained October, “which is a crazy experience for me – esp seeing people that are familiar with my music, being able to connect with people who are now being introduced to me and kinda being able to play my stuff for them, yeah, it’s really been overwhelming but in a good way. Definitely one of my favorite experiences thus far in my career, yeah.
“I’m really grateful for this opportunity to tour with Kes.” He added. “There’s so much to learn from him and his skill set and the band and how they do what they do, so to be able to open up the show with my own 20-minute set as well as perform Magic with them is definitely a blessing. Like in my head I’m still this guy from Grande, who’s all the way over here just sharing the gift that God gave me with as many people as possible…”
Aside from the actual artistes involved, Kes’ new management team has also expressed great satisfaction with the completion of the first leg of the tour and is excited about taking Soca to new spaces and places.
Manager, Damon DeGraff said, “The goal is to continuously expand how our music touches various regions and cultures and by doing this successfully and selling out these venues, we’re showing that our sound and culture can be engaging in venues where traditionally, soca music had never been heard.”