Phantom Sway

Get Your Music Right with Tank And The Bangas!

Okay folks. People are still making music and it’s my job to remind you that it is good

Okay, folks. People are still making music and it’s my job to remind you that it is good. What you hear on the radio is a sad representation of what’s actually out there. Let me get off my high horse and get right to it.

I came across this band while surfing YouTube one Friday night with my 9-year-old daughter.  What usually starts with watching a couple of cooking shows typically devolved into watching clips of  random live band performances and soon landed us on NPR’s Tiny Desk series and BOOM! It happened.

What happened? “Tank and The Bangas” happened. We got sucked in and basically spent the rest of the night watching any and every video we could find of them on the interwebs.

The band is led by Tarriona “Tank” Ball, who obviously enjoys taking her audience on a straight up roller coaster ride of emotions. Tank is basically Disneyland in human form and after experiencing the force she brings you find yourself exhausted and falling asleep with a smile on your face. She’s not the only one bringing the funk, she has a supporting cast that is second to none. Anjelika “Jelly” Joseph pulls her own weight.  Anjelika and Tarriona have such great chemistry it’s apparent they’ve been singing together, everywhere, forever. Then there’s  Albert Allenback, the flautist. It’s hard to take your eyes off him. He’s definitely the golden boy in this group (no pun intended).  Josh Johnson the drummer keeps everyone in line. While Norman Spence and Merell Burkett pull it all together on the keyboards and guitar.

As if stumbling across this band’s music wasn’t good enough, I had the pleasure of seeing them live with my 9-year-old daughter and 15-year-old son at a free concert event that took place at the Levitt Pavilion in downtown LA. They did not disappoint. To see them live is everything and they are everything I want to see in a live band performance.  This article isn’t doing them justice at all! Trust me. Listen for yourself.  When they blow up (and they will) remember you heard it here first.

Mark Davis

Mark Davis is a music enthusiast, culture writer, father of two and husband of one (which is fine because who needs more than one wife. Double the trouble). Roadie, foodie, sun hog. Just a black man living in a white man’s paradise – Orange County.

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Harriet Tubman is one of America’s most beloved historical figures but has sadly been largely relegated to just a few facts during Black History Month. This incredible ex-slave, spy, cook, nurse, public speaker and rescuer deserves a story worthy of her stature.

“Minty” – tentatively titled after Tubman’s nickname – is a “reimagining” of Harriet Tubman as an action hero. It is a period piece with a modern flare.