The Fuzz Band, whose sound is a fusion of Urban & Rock music, met and formed while attending Hampton University. The nine-piece band is comprised of 3 vocalists, drums, percussion, keys, guitar, horn and bass, was originally created as the house band for Fuzzy Wednesday. Spanning over 20 years, it is Virginia’s longest running open mic. The band soon began collaborating on original music and developing their own sound. Performing first at local venues and colleges, the band soon released Without Boundaries, followed by Collision, Change, a Change of the Guards and a self-titled EP. Several years, multiple albums, and three USO world tours later, the band continues to shine.
Locally, the band has won multiple awards as Best R&B, Best Live Performer, and Best Song & Album recipients. Nationally, The Fuzz Band was featured in the Hollywood Issue of Black Enterprise Magazine, and has received nods in Rolling Stone and in Spin Magazine for their Chrysler Jeep Campaign. The band was also reviewed and spotlighted on various online media outlets including OkPlayer, Afropunk and SoulTracks.
The multi-genre band known for its creativity, musicianship, high intensity, energy-packed productions has performed with Grammy award winning artists such as Alicia Keys, Lauryn Hill, Chicago, Huey Lewis & The News, Jill Scott, Erykah Badu, Common, Sheila E and Outkast and has been commissioned to perform private parties for former NBA star Allen Iverson, Hall of “Fame-r” Bruce Smith, and have played internationally for fashion mogul Tommy Hilfiger. They also work in close coordination with NBA Referee Tony Brothers and Men for Hope; and with Kam Cares Foundation, a non-profit organization founded by Seattle Seahawks’ Kam Chancellor to help build programs to impact under-served communities. The Fuzz Band has been a featured performer at Bam Bam’s Spring Jam for the past 4 years.
The Fuzz Band was also a featured performer at one of President Barack Obama’s inaugural balls in 2008. The band, which was the winner of the First Annual Capital Jazz Festival in DC, went on to headline the 43rd Annual Hampton Jazz Festival with Frankie Beverly and Maze, and was a featured headliner at the legendary Blue Note Jazz Club in New York City in 2014 and 2016. Featured on the Foxwoods Casino’s entertainment roster as the New Year’s Eve headliner for two years; The band played to crowds of over 5000 casino guests.
The Fuzz Band also won a coveted spot at the 5th annual LOCKN’ Festival on the estate of legendary Grateful Dead guitarist Jerry Garcia, beating out other bands over 3 months and 3 rounds of ROCKN’ to LOCKN’ battles. The lineup included The Fuzz Band, George Clinton & P-Funk, Sheryl Crow, Tedeschi Trucks Band and Dead & Co featuring Branford Marsalis, John Mayer and more.
Working on their 5th studio project as a full unit, and surviving the dreaded “curse” which tends to tear most bands to apart, the Fuzz Band will release its 5th studio album in collaboration with Rockfish Music in summer 2019. Rockfish music is a community of musicians and music lovers based in The Blue Ridge Mountains of Central Virginia providing advocacy and support to independent artists.
K’Bana Blaq (tenor/bass vocal): K’bana Blaq has been a staple of The Fuzz Band since it’s early days. In addition to his role with the band, K’bana is a singer, songwriter, writer, actor, photographer and model.
Michon David (alto vocal): Michon David joined The Fuzz Band while studying Music Education and vocal jazz Hampton University. She is a middle school chorus teacher, singer, songwriter and pianist from St. Thomas, Virgin Islands
Jason Jenifer (Drums, Percussion, Background Vocals): Jason joined The Fuzz Band while attending Hampton University as a Music Engineering Technology major. He is a multi-instrumentalist and middle school band director from Maryland.
Tory Slade (Keys, Piano, Vocals): Tory Slade is a graduate of Hampton University’s Music Engineering Technology program. In addition to his role in the band, Tory is a musical director, singer and songwriter)
Duane Smith (Bandleader, Trumpet): Duane Smith formed The Fuzz Band while attending and studying Jazz and Music Education at Hampton University. Having graduated from the “Famed” LaGuardia High School in New York, he sought to create opportunities for musicians. In addition to his role with the band, he also produces and arranges for the band and external artists. His horn arrangements can be heard on many national artist recordings and he was featured in a national Coke ad which ran for 4 months in Summer 2017.
Nakia Madry-Smith (soprano vocal): Nakia joined The Fuzz Band while studying Music Engineering Technology at Hampton Univesrity. In addition to her role with the band, Nakia is a classically trained vocalist and songwriter.
Percy Thomas III (Bass, Key Bass): “PT” joined the band in 2014. In addition to his role with the band, PT serves as a musician for several notable ministries and has a mind for musical instrument repair and technology.
The NorVa, mulitple
Capital Jazz Festival, 2004
USO Middle Eastern Tour, 2006
The Bitter End, NYC, 2006, 2007
Charlotte Jazz Festival, 2007
President Obama’s Inagural Ball, 2008
Capitol Jazz Festival Cruise, 2008
USO Meditteranean Tour, 2008
Tommy Hilfiger’s Annual Christmas Parties (Amsterdam and NYC), 2008
USO London Tour, 2009
Hampton Jazz Festival, 2010
Art of Cool, 2014
The Blue Note, NYC, 2014, 2016
LOCKN’ Festival, 2018
Artist Collaborations & Shared Headlines
Huey Lewis & The News
Frankie Beverly & Maze
George Clinto and PFunk
Robert Randolph and the Family Band
Corey Henry & The Funk Apostles
Allen Iverson, NBA
Kam Chancellor, NFL
Bruce Smith, NFL Hall of Fame
Tommy Hilfiger, Fashion Mogul
Tony Brothers, NBA Referee
Virginia Battle of the Bands, 2001
Budwesier Battle of the Bands, 2005
Capital Jazz Fest Battle of the Bands, 2004
ROCKN’ to LOCKN”, 2018