rockford illinois entertainment guide
Date: 06/01/2003
Tres Elliot - From Funk to Sweet Home Alabama
by Patrick McDonough
For a four-piece band that's been together for only two years, Tres Elliot is a musical collective comprised of more talent then most national acts presently on tour.

With a drummer that once competed against 'The Jackson 5' in a talent competition - a lead guitarist that was penned as "Rockford's own Prince" and has written songs for: 'The Jets,' Mark Anthony; arranged music for Tyco Rogers (Prince's sister); and acted as a producer for: Ann Nesby, (formerly with 'The Sounds of Blackness'), Manuel Seals, (a producer who has written for Mariah Carey), and local artists such as 'The DP Boys', 'Serenity', 'Too Deep', and other Rap and R&B artists - an engaging lead singer that gets the crowd on their feet - and a charismatic bass player that had the vision to bring them together for a common love of most musical genre's in order, "to fill everyone's soul," with their music.

Tres Elliot is: Joe T. - (lead vocals), Charles F. Davis III "Tootie" - (lead guitar, keyboard, producer, songwriter, and programmer), D. Thomas - (bass guitar), Richard A. Marthel "Po' Rich" - (drums, lead/backing vocals).

It was Thomas that first brought the band together. At the time Tootie was in a "Best of Rockford blues band called "The Fella's." They both felt they wanted to play more than one or two styles of music. Thomas stated, "Look at me I'm a black bass player…I'm sick of playing just blues and funk." According to the rest of the band this love of a diverse collection of musical genres is one thing that brought them together. Tootie had this remark about the energy and the connection that the band has when they are performing, "There is a certain feel to bringing a song to a different place. If we have the urge to funk up a song we do." He went on to say that, "Our main objective is to keep them dancing. We're not structured. We hear something we like about a song and we make it different. It's a big party. When we're playing we just sort of melt into each other."

At a Tres Elliot show you are more than likely to hear blues, jazz, country, house, rock and more. According to Tootie, "We love seeing people's reactions when we go directly from point A to Z." Thomas had this to add, "We might go from a funk song right into Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Sweet Home Alabama" or AC/DC's "Back in Black." They love to read the crowd and see what type of music makes them move.

It is the musical diversity and talent of Tres Elliot combined with their high energy level that is going to take this talented group of musicians to the next level.

Their next step is to bring preprogrammed electronics into their act to make it more of a dance show. They are planning on making it more of a full sensory show with out using gimmicks. They are going to create an even fuller sound and an environment in which they can further explore their musical talents by overlapping prerecorded sequenced sounds with their live show.

According to Thomas, "[things] are going to be happening." They have been using the last two years to tighten up their sound and now is the time when they are going to step it up a notch.

The band had this to add, "Come Check us out and see what the hoo-hop is all about!"
Contact Information
Tres Elliot
D. Thomas
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