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Superfrog. Courtesy photo.




Wobblesauce w/ Superfrog

When: Saturday, Jan. 24, 9 p.m.
Where: Jade Dragon, 1087 Elm St., Manchester 
More: JigsMusic at on.fb.me/157ddh0




Frog rock
Seacoast groove rockers play Jade Dragon

01/22/15
By Michael Witthaus music@hippopress.com



Superfrog, a soul-infused Seacoast band that melds roots, reggae and electrified soul, will join Boston-based Wobblesauce for a show at Jade Dragon in Manchester on Saturday, Jan. 24.

Superfrog’s latest album, released in mid-2014, reflects a lineup change for a band that began as a trio of college buddies 10 years ago in South Berwick, Maine. Over the years, the group has employed female backup vocals and horns. The current edition includes keyboard player Max Chase, who brings a vintage sound on Hammond B3 and Fender Rhodes organ.
Constants are Shane Comer and Adam Vinciguerra trading percussion, Nate Proper’s thumping bass and versatile guitarist Jeremy Grob (people call him “Fuzz”). Phil Poggi played guitar on the new album but left soon after it came out, making the current lineup a quintet. 
“Yeah, it’s a regular Fleetwood Mac,” Nate Proper laughed during a recent phone interview. “But the core four of the band has been pretty consistent. Beyond that, we’ve had a rotating cast of characters … but we enjoy bringing new, fresh influences into the family, as much as it’s kind of a chaotic thing to deal with.”
Proper added that Superfrog expects to add a second guitarist at some point. 
“In the interim, I’m really thankful it’s Jeremy who’s doing it,” he said. “Fuzz really holds down that sound [and] does a good job of switching things up, straddling the rhythm and the lead.”
The show at Manchester’s Jade Dragon is the fourth for the band in the last year, all booked by local promoter Jordan Paul’s JigsMusic. 
“It’s a great spot, and Jordan’s done a really great job of reinvigorating the music scene there,” said Proper.  “We’ve been working with him for quite a while now, since back when he started with the Shaskeen.”
The band remains a steady presence in its hometown of Portsmouth, playing regularly at Stone Church, Thirsty Moose, Fury’s, the Gas Light and others, while occasionally traveling up to Concord for shows at True Brew and Penuche’s. They manage to successfully navigate a bar scene that often wants more covers than originals.
“I’ve never felt like we’ve had to compromise what we do in order to play what we want to play,” Proper said. “The covers that we play, we love every single one of those songs and we love playing them. There are places that we’ve played where we’ve been warned ahead of time; these guys want 80 percent covers. We’ll do a few, but mostly our own material, and every time it’s gone swimmingly.”
With nearly a half dozen clubs welcoming EDM, funk and jam bands and asking only that they keep crowds dancing and drinking, Manchester is becoming a hot spot for bands like Superfrog. After the band opens the music at the Jan. 24 gig, Proper and his mates plan to linger and enjoy the rest of the night. 
“We’re always interested, and we’re big fans of the music scene in general,” he said. “Even when we’re not playing, you often catch many of us watching others play music. We’ll definitely be sticking around for the other set.”
Proper is stoked to do another Manchester show. 
“The last gig we played at the Jade Dragon was just about one of the best,” said Proper. “Jordan brings so much as far as light people, sound people and everything else.  He pulls out all the stops putting these things together … I’m really looking forward to this one.”  
 
As seen in the January 22, 2015 issue of the Hippo.





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