NICK BLAEMIRE AND THE HUSTLE is a 9-member R&B/Funk band who blend their love of the 70s, 80s and early 90s live band-infused pop music of Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson and Donny Hathaway with the modern sensibility of artists like Bruno Mars, Maroon 5 and Justin Timberlake. With all songs written by Nick and intricately arranged for a rhythm and 4-piece horn section by music director Jesse Vargas, the Hustle makes sounds like few other bands currently making sounds today.
They have played sold-out shows at New York City venues ranging from The Studio at Webster Hall, Rockwood and Mercury Lounge to Bowery Electric, Spike Hill and Ars Nova, and recently released their debut self-titled EP in March of 2012. The six-song album features their first single, “Complete,” which was mixed by Grammy-winning producer Mike Mangini (Joss Stone’s “The Soul Sessions”). The rest of the EP was tracked and produced at Boiler Room Studios in Brooklyn by Chris Soper, Nick Banns and Jesse Singer of Lion’s Share Music (Anthony Hamilton’s “Back to Love”). They also released a dance remix of “Complete,” done by pop producer and songwriter Will Post. All of the tracks are now available on iTunes, Spotify, Amazon, CDBaby, Reverbnation, Soundcloud and Noisetrade.
Blaemire and Vargas actually met through the world of theatre, collaborating on the Broadway musical GLORY DAYS, for which Blaemire wrote the score and Vargas arranged and orchestrated. It ran at the Circle in the Square in 2008, and the cast album available on Sh-K-Boom Records. Since its run, show has had over 25 productions worldwide, including a major production in Tokyo, Japan in 2010. Nick and Jesse are also at work on two separate new musicals, which they find time to do between living out their dreams in the band, and sleeping 20 minutes a night. But it’s worth it.
Along with the unique sound the Hustle creates, there is a bit of a movement percolating on the world wide web, concerning the hashtag “#nerdsoul.” Nerd soul may even be a more accurate description of the kind of music Nick and the Hustle make – there is a consciousness to the songs that suggests a hope for what pop songs have the ability to reach, both lyrically and musically – but while it may be cool, and horns may play and grooves may pocket harder than ever before, it’ll always be done by a buncha nerdy music lovers getting their kicks by trying to push themselves as far as they can.
Historically, pop music has reflected and encapsulated the time in which it’s come from. It’s time to get back to those years, and make our generation proud of what our music sounds like again.