The spirit of Youngstown, Ohio—a city historically favored by steel manufacturers and Cam’ron—gets channeled on a new 7″ single from up-and-coming Miami funk label Mango Hill Records. You can see that mixture of hometown pride and Rustbelt urban decay all over “The Slitter’s” loose drums, bustling organ, and funky guitar riffs.
Facing bleak opportunities in the cracked-lip cold of Ohio, Hammond organist Adam Scone knew he wanted something other than what his grandparents and parents had labored their lives for. A third generation steelworker, Scone has been working to keep the organ, and its blue collar symbolism, alive. Lifting the spirits of broken souls at the end of the night is a specific job in itself, but a revered role nonetheless. In addition to playing in the group Sugarman 3 on Daptone Records, Scone is also the brains behind the Scone Cash Players project.
On “The Slitter,” Scone masterfully handles the Hammond organ, keeping the chords powerful and busy. Accompanied by Dunham Records producer and guitarist Tommy “TNT” Brenneck (Lee Fields & The Expressions, Amy Winehouse, etc.), as well as in-demand funk drummer Eric Kalb (John Scofield, Sharon Jones and The Dap Kings), the trio build a pocket that’s relentlessly cold. “The Slitter” is fit for a vinyl release; there are hints of The Meters and Booker T. Jones, but the Scone Cash Players cut their own version of vibrant, contemporary soul.
Named after the archaic steel slitting machines of Youngstown, this is the first single off the album Blast Furnace, due out on Mango Hill Records in May. This is music of the Midwest; steeped in tradition, torpid summers, and glacial work days. You can pre order it here.