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Talking Shop With Cookin’ On 3 Burners

Led by the unmistakable sounds of the Hammond organ, Cookin’ on 3 Burners join the dots between deep funk, raw soul, dirty organ jazz and boogaloo. Over the next three weeks they’ll be taking over Soul Sundays at The Retreat. Beat speaks to the band’s guitar twanging, funk slinging third Dan West to find out what’s in store.

Cookin’ On 3 Burners’ is essentially an instrumental Hammond trio, and as a result you tend to collaborate with a variety of artists. Who have you been working with lately?
We wound up an awesome 2015 with an amazing Cookin' tour with two of our favourite vocalists – raucous raconteur Tex Perkins and smokin' soulstress Stella Angelico. It was a great live collab culminating in a cracking Saturday night show on the main stage at Queenscliff Music Festival. After cleaning the heads on our eight-track tape machine, we are back in the studio currently tracking our new album, which is bringing it back to all-live trio format. It is set to be a combination of dirty dance floor funk and a couple of guests we are really excited about.
 
You’ve had a busy couple of years – first of all releasing the Blind Bet LP in late 2014, and following up in October 2015 with The Writing’s On The Wall 7”. Can you tell us about these two releases?
Blind Bet was released on our UK based label Freestyle and can best be described as classic soul sounds with a modern cinematic twist. We were lucky enough to pick up a 2014 Music Victoria award for Best Soul/R&B Album for that record, which was awesome. Tex Perkins was one of the guest vocalists on that record and he was up for working together again so we got back in the soul kitchen to cook up a new 7” single The Writing's On The Wall. It was a great opportunity for us to pay homage to The Cruel Sea with an instrumental breakbeat version of their classic tune Black Stick for the B-side of the release. 
 
Cookin’ on 3 Burners have solidified themselves as one of Australia’s leading soul and funk acts. What makes you guys stand out from the crowd?
The screaming B3 Hammond organ. This is an amazing instrument and our organ player Jake Mason plays left hand bass and rips solos and accompaniment with his right hand. It's pretty killer to watch actually. As we are a three piece, we can focus on interplay and fun. We also are just as happy playing behind a sweet soul vocalist as we are busting out instrumental tunes for breakers and MCs at a block party. 
 
You’ll be hitting up The Retreat for the next three weeks for their Soul Sunday sessions. Who have you enlisted to perform with you, and what should audiences expect from these shows?
Good times and two fiery sets that joins the dots between deep funk, raw soul, dirty organ jazz and boogaloo. We are excited to stretch out instrumentally as well as feature the awesome vocal stylings of The Wolfgramm Sisters, Stella Angelico and Mantra over the course of our three week residency. Big Up and see you down there.
 
COOKIN’ ON 3 BURNERS are playing at The Retreat Hotel on Sunday January 24 (with The Wolfgramm Sisters), Sunday January 31 (with Stella Angelico) and Sunday February 7 (with Mantra).